The fiscal 2018 D.C. budget allows for four new Main Streets — a program created by the National Trust for Historic Preservation that could bring in significant seed money for successful applicants to help preserve and revitalize historic commercial districts. Georgetown is one of the contenders for the new grants.
A decision as to which neighborhoods get the designation will be made by October, according to District sources. The new programs could be up and running as soon as November.
The Georgetown Business Association has taken the lead in coordinating the Georgetown Main Street application. The project would cover Wisconsin Avenue from K Street to Whitehaven Parkway. The effort was introduced July 19 at a Georgetown Business Association networking reception at Ella-Rue on P Street.
“It is all about getting feet to the street,” said Martin Smith, executive director of the Barracks Row Main Street, which in 2005 won the prestigious Great American Main Street Award.” Smith called for participation from Georgetown’s business owners, accepting the first donation for the proposed Georgetown Main Street from Ed Solomon of Anthony’s Tuxedo and Wedding Creations.
There are currently 12 Main Street programs in Washington, D.C. — from Eastern Market and Shaw to Columbia Heights and Tenleytown. Each district’s designated nonprofit receives a grant from the D.C. government through the Department of Small and Local Business Development.