Beloit, Wisconsin Honored with 2011 Great American Main Street Award®
National Trust for Historic Preservation Praises Leadership in Revitalization at Annual Conference
Posted May 23, 2011 | Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-588-6141
The National Trust for Historic Preservation announced today that Downtown Beloit Association is a winner of the 2011 Great American Main Street Awards® (GAMSA). Recognized as a leader following the Main Street Four-Point Approach®, embracing sound historic preservation ethics and building strategic partnerships, Downtown Beloit Association (DBA) was honored at the Main Street Awards Ceremony during the National Main Streets Conference in Des Moines, Iowa.
The National Trust Main Street Center’s annual GAMSA winners are recognized for their exceptional accomplishments in revitalizing the nation’s historic and traditional Main Street commercial districts by using the proven Main Street Four-Point Approach®. Capitalizing on its unique historical and cultural heritage, DBA helped save the historic Hotel Hilton and Woolworths Building, developing them into attractive lofts and a local foods grocery store, respectively; reinvented the industrial riverfront into a haven for boaters and bikers; and reinvigorated the streets with lively shops, public art and an ambitious events calendar. Twenty years after the organization’s founding, property values in downtown Beloit have increased by 192%, an average of 9.6% per year. Residential occupancy rates are almost 100%, showing that downtown Beloit is a place people want to live as well as to work and play.
“Downtown Beloit Association has an impressive track record of taking underutilized areas envisioning their best use and leveraging partnerships to achieve exemplary results,” said Doug Loescher, director of the National Trust Main Street Center. “Beloit’s rich arts offerings, revitalized riverfront, creative adaptive use projects and award-winning farmer’s market are shining examples of DBA’s outstanding work.”
The other four winners are Main Street Fort Pierce, Fort Pierce, Fla.; Old Town Main Street, Lansing, Mich.; Downtown Newark Partnership, Newark, Del.; and Silver City MainStreet Project, Silver City, N.M.
GAMSA winners demonstrate exemplary achievement in the process of strengthening their downtowns and commercial districts based on the following selection criteria:
- Active involvement of the public and private sectors;
- Broad-based community support for the revitalization effort;
- Quality of achievements over time;
- Innovative solutions to significant problems;
- Commitment to historic preservation;
- Evolving track record of successful commercial district revitalization;
- Comprehensive revitalization effort: activity in all four points of the Main Street Four-Point Approach® to commercial district revitalization;
- Economic impact of the revitalization program; and
- Successful small business development.
The winners were selected by a national jury composed of former award winners, community development professionals, governmental agency representatives who are active in community economic development and historic preservation.
The MainStreet Four-Point Approach® is a proven methodology for historic preservation-based economic development that was developed by the National Trust for Historic Preservation 30 years ago and is used in more than 2,000 communities throughout the U.S.
The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded nonprofit organization, works to save America’s historic places.