Mayor Muriel Bowser officially welcomed the Georgetown Main Street at an Oct. 25 gathering at the Phoenix boutique, a third-generation-owned small business on Wisconsin Avenue. Georgetown’s is the 16th Main Street program in the nation’s capital.
In the store, filled with business persons and supporters, Bowser presented a certificate designating the area as a full member of the DC Main Streets program.
“We continue to enhance our city’s economic engine by investing in corridors like this one,” she said. “Many small businesses have been able to thrive because of DC Main Streets, and now we are proud to bring this community-oriented program to the small businesses of Georgetown.”
The mission of DC Main Streets is to support the traditional retail corridors in the District, according to the Department of Small and Local Business Development, which adds: “We revitalize communities by retaining and recruiting businesses, improving commercial properties and streetscapes and attracting consumers. Leaders in these neighborhood organizations assist businesses and coordinate sustainable community-driven revitalization efforts in their neighborhoods.”
The Georgetown Business Association is the grantee for the Georgetown Main Street program, which is receiving $175,000 from the DSLBD to promote businesses along Wisconsin Avenue from the waterfront to Whitehaven Parkway.
GBA President Sonya Bernhardt said that small business owners along Wisconsin Avenue’s “commercial corridor have our support as we cultivate new ones.” GBA Vice President Hope Solomon thanked DSLBD Interim Director Tene Dolphin, who said, “The proven Main Street model will support Georgetown with retention of the long-time businesses that are increasingly at risk.”
Ward 2 Council member Jack Evans, who lives in Georgetown, credited Bernhardt and Solomon with persistently pushing him to attain a Main Street for Georgetown.
After the remarks, the mayor raised the big scissors — in the midst of a group that included Phoenix owner Samantha Hayes — and cut the ribbon. With that, Bowser proclaimed: “Sweet 16! Now, go shopping.”