Main Street News - March 2008

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Main Street News Cover – 2008/03

Feature Article:

Form-based Zoning: Bringing New Urbanism to Main Street

By Nick Kalogeresis, AICP

This reader-friendly article looks at an important tool Main Street programs should use in their revitalization arsenal. Written for the non-planner, the author explains the history of zoning in America, how modern zoning has negatively impacted Main Street, and how new form-based zoning can help Main Street meet its goals. Learn about form-based codes, New Urbanist principles, SmartCodes, components of form-based zoning from architecture to landscaping, and read examples of communities already using these codes.

Shop Talk: Store Image: Time for Rethinking?

By Margie Johnson

The second in a series of articles for helping your small business owners become more successful looks at the importance of periodically refreshing a business’ image. The author shares six easy steps your business owners can take to critically assess their establishments and decide if elements of their shop communicate the right message to customers. Help your businesses conduct their own visual audit and start attracting more customers today!

Selecting Streetscape Consultants

By Donna Dow, CMSM, Durant Main Street

This is the second in a series of articles exploring multiple aspects of a Main Street streetscaping project. New streetscaping has many benefits for the value of the district, quality of life, and overall image…however, these projects have many steps. This article discusses the process behind selecting the right people for your team, lessons learned, and tips to help you make your project a success. Find out which types of consultants are necessary for working on your project, the timing of hiring consultants, what to look for in firms, how to work well with firms, and steps you need to take when selecting consultants.

Network Notes

By Luke VanBelleghem

The very diverseEast Somerville Main Streets program has made several resources and its website trilingual; the National Trust for Historic Preservation announces its 2008 Dozen Distinctive Destinations list; Nachitoches launched its Cane River wayfinding program; findings from the 2007 National Retail Federation’s Retail Real Estate study shows that retailers are moving back into downtowns and urban storefronts rather than opening in strip malls or malls; and online -- the Craigslist Foundation offers nonprofits free resources and educational materials and Picasa Web Albums can help Main Street design committees.

PreservationNation.org: Our New Direction Online

The National Trust for Historic Preservation launched its new website, PreservationNation.org, to create a virtual town square where people like Main Streeters and other preservationists can share stories and tools, make national connections, and get inspired to save historic places. The site takes advantage of social media (Web 2.0) concepts of open information and communication. It will offer Main Streeters access to more National Trust resources and create more visibility for Main Street districts