The City of Lenoir Main Street Department has been designated a Main Street America 2022 Accredited program. This accreditation status is Main Street America’s top-tier recognition.
“We are proud of our North Carolina Main Street programs that have met the criteria for National Main Street Center,” said N.C. Commerce Secretary Machelle Baker Sanders. “North Carolina’s economy depends on the thriving downtowns that support the overall vitality of their Main Street communities. This achievement is the result of the diligent work of these programs that help fuel prosperity across the entire state.”
Main Street America is a movement that has been helping revitalize older and historic commercial districts for more than 40 years. The program and its participants advocate for preservation-based economic development and community revitalization.
The City of Lenoir became North Carolina's twelfth Main Street America Community in 1984. Being an accredited program means that the City and Main Street Department staff have demonstrated a commitment to comprehensive commercial district revitalization. Lenoir has a proven track record of successfully implementing the Main Street Four-Point Approach and helping businesses, events, and the community thrive in Downtown Lenoir.
Main Street Director Kaylynn Horn and Community Engagement Coordinator Matthew Anthony run the City of Lenoir Main Street Program. They organize downtown events, recruit volunteers, assist downtown businesses with grants, and promote Downtown Lenoir.
"Downtown Lenoir is the heart of the city, and Kaylynn and Matthew have done a great job to make sure it's strong and healthy," Mayor Joe Gibbons said. "I'm really proud of the work that they do with our events and our programs. We've had many new businesses open in Downtown in the past year or two, and a lot of that is because of the work done by our Main Street Department."
New businesses that opened in Downtown Lenoir this year and last include Stewart & Associates, 305 Studio, J Birds, Artem Gallery, Aary's Ice Cream, Golden Cardinal Gallery, 4400 Ranch & Cattle Company, Time Capsule Vintage Store, Ben Griffin Realty and Auction, and Wolf Moon Salt Cave & Stress Reduction Center.
In 2021, Main Street America programs generated $5.76 billion in local reinvestment, helped open 6,601 net new businesses, generated 30,402 net new jobs, catalyzed the rehabilitation of 10,595 historic buildings, and leveraged 1,427,729 volunteer hours. On average, for every dollar that a Main Street program spent to support its operations, it generated $19.34 of new investment back into Main Street communities. For more information about Main Street America, visit www.mainstreet.org.
To learn about downtown events, programs, businesses, and opportunities, visit www.DowntownLenoirNC.com.
The graphic above shows the North Carolina Main Street and Small Town Main Street Communities as of May this year.