The Mississippi Main Street Association (MMSA) will provide Work Plan Workshops to 25 Main Street communities in the state in 2022 in order to help restore economic vitality in the historic downtowns and business districts.
The workshops will be led by Randy Wilson of Community Design Solutions and will produce strategic plans to guide downtown revitalization in the communities. The process will produce strategies and the framework needed for successful implementation by the local Main Street programs in each of the communities.
The project is funded with a two-year $267,500 grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, with additional support from the Mississippi Development Authority.
The 25 Main Street communities that will receive a Work Plan Workshop include: Tunica, Cleveland, Greenville, Greenwood, Philadelphia, Leake County, Meridian, Vicksburg, Clinton, Crystal Springs, Natchez, Woodville, Columbia, Laurel, Hattiesburg, Sumrall, Picayune, Gulfport, Ocean Springs, Pascagoula, Moss Point, Winona, Forest, Pass Christian, and Long Beach.
The workshops will be a one-day facilitated process with a stakeholder group in each community and will start in April and conclude in September of this year.
This project is a continuation of an earlier series of Work Plan Workshops that were funded by the Mississippi Hills National Heritage Area for the 23 Main Street communities in their region.
After the workshops are completed this year, every Main Street community in Mississippi will have received a Work Plan Workshop and a Strategic Planning Report.
The reports will be informed by a community-specific economic and market analysis that will be produced by Dr. Rachael Carter with Mississippi State University Extension. Final deliverables will include a community economic profile, a multi-page work plan document categorized into the four points of the Main Street Approach™, and a strategy board that will serve as an implementation guideline.
“We are excited about our partnership with the Kellogg Foundation and are looking forward to assisting our communities with this valuable planning service,” said Thomas Gregory, State Coordinator for MMSA. “These workshops are designed to build consensus in the community and establish priorities for the Main Street program for the coming year.”