The national Main Street revitalization effort for historic downtowns was formed 40 years ago, and there has been a statewide Texas program since that time operating through the Texas Historical Commission. The Texas Main Street Program (TMSP) is one of the oldest and largest in the nation. The program was brought to Texas by Anice Read, a former member of the Texas Historical Commission, who also served as first director of the state Main Street effort.
The mission of the TMSP is "to provide technical expertise, resources and support for Texas communities in the preservation and revitalization of historic downtowns and commercial neighborhood districts in accord with the National Main Street Four Point Approach® of organization, economic vitality, design and promotion." At the TMSP, staff work on a daily basis with our 89 designated communities to help them reach their revitalization and preservation goals through the framework of the Approach®. The methodology provides the necessary tools for local communities to effectively address the issues historic downtowns face.
The TMSP is part of the Community Heritage Development Division of the Texas Historical Commission and operates in affiliation with Main Street America®, a subsidiary of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. In 1981, following a pilot project of the national center that studied ways to address the decline of America's downtowns, the TMSP accepted its first communities and became one of the first six statewide coordinating programs in the nation.
Main Street is a powerful tool for reviving local economies and bringing communities together to forge their future. Watch the video below to learn more.
Volunteer hours devoted to local Main Street programs during 2019, valued at $3.9 million