What do the revitalized corridors of H Street, Barracks Row, Dupont Circle, and Shaw Main Street have in common? Other than attracting new restaurants, businesses, and interest from residents and passerbys, they are all part of DC’s Main Street Program. The Program was one of the biggest drivers of revitalization along these corridors and it’s now coming to Rhode Island Ave NE.
The Department of Small and Local Business Development has put out a Notice of Funding Availability for Rhode Island Ave NE Target Area, saying:
The designated DC Main Streets program (organization) will receive $200,000 in grant funding and technical assistance to support commercial revitalization initiatives. The Rhode Island Avenue Main Streets organization will develop programs and services to: (1) assist business districts with the retention, expansion and attraction of neighborhood-serving retail stores; and (2) unify and strengthen the commercial corridor. The DC Main Streets grant award is a recurring grant.
The DC Main Streets Program is different than being a Great Streets (another program), and Rhode Island Ave NE now has the distinction of being both. Started in 2002, the DC Main Street Program ”fosters retail investment in DC by providing services and funding to help communities retain and recruit businesses, improve commercial properties and streetscapes, and attract consumers.
“Through the DC Main Streets program, DSLBD provides comprehensive technical and financial assistance to build the capacity of neighborhood nonprofit organizations (i.e. DC Main Street organizations) to assist businesses and coordinate sustainable community-driven revitalization efforts in their neighborhoods. The local DC Main Street commercial district revitalization efforts are organized and led by local volunteers and community development professionals. DC Main Street program grant recipients are competitively selected.”
This is great news for the Avenue and is pointing to some great things to come for the Avenue!