Tybee Island Receives 2019 NATIONAL Main Street ACCREDITATION
Tybee Island, GA (April 25, 2019) – The City of Tybee Island has been designated as an accredited Main Street America™ program for meeting rigorous performance standards set by the National Main Street Center. Each year, the National Main Street Center and its partners announce the list of accredited Main Street America programs to recognize their exemplary commitment to preservation-based economic development and community revitalization through the Main Street Approach™ The city has been part of the Main Street program since 2010. In 2014, when city officials activated the Development Authority, the boundaries of the program expanded to within city limits and the name changed to the Development Authority / Main Street Program. The program serves as a central hub for businesses, local organizations, property owners, and officials to utilize design, marketing, financial and technical resources that are available.
“We are proud to acknowledge this year’s 840 nationally accredited Main Street America programs that have worked tirelessly to strengthen their communities. said Patrice Frey, President & CEO of the National Main Street Center. “These programs deserve recognition for generating impressive economic returns, preserving community character, and celebrating local history. Main Street America Accredited communities are part of a powerful movement of change makers, and their dedication to improving quality of life in the places they call home is inspiring.
The Development Authority/Main Street Program performance is annually evaluated by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs – Office of Downtown Development, which works in partnership with the National Main Street Center to identify the local programs that meet ten national performance standards. Evaluation criteria determines the communities that are building comprehensive and sustainable revitalization efforts and include standards such as fostering strong public-private partnerships, documenting programmatic progress, and actively preserving historic buildings.
Last year, Main Street America programs generated $4.93 billion in local reinvestment, helped open 5,310 net new businesses, generated 25,301 net new jobs, catalyzed the rehabilitation of 8,146 historic buildings, and clocked 2.2 million volunteer hours. <image007.jpg> The City of Tybee’s (local) impact on these numbers include over $7 million of private/public investments, a total of 9 new businesses with 16 net new jobs created, and 30 public events and 12 film productions that had an economic impact of approximately $3.1 million with over 26,500 attendees and 700 hours dedicated by volunteers. In addition, the city was awarded a Historic Preservation Fund Grant for design guidelines, which was possible because the city is designated a Certified Local Government by Georgia’s Historic Preservation Division. The increased interest in preservation over the year resulted in more funding for the Program’s matching Façade Improvement Grant, additional property listings on the National Register of Historic Places and added protections of resources/character defining features in districts such as Downtown.
Tybee Island Mayor, Jason Buelterman, states "The City of Tybee Island is honored to be recognized as an accredited Main Street America™ community once again. Our Development Authority / Main Street Program is an integral part of our city’s functionality. The services provided, with coordinating efforts, provide valuable resources to our residents and merchants. These services help us achieve our vision for quality revitalization to ensure economic opportunity, a vibrant quality of life, and a thriving future. The foundation we’ve built with the Program over the years has continued to help maintain our sense of place in a balanced fashion. Each program throughout the nation is recognized for their unique local efforts and I am proud that our city is setting an example on Georgia’s coast.”
About Tybee Island, GA.: The City of Tybee Island, Georgia is on the outermost barrier island off the Savannah area coast. With a wild bird sanctuary, over three miles of ocean beaches, and salt marshes on the back river, outdoor recreation activities abound for visitors to the island. As a key defense point to the important Savannah port, Tybee’s Fort Screven, Tybee Post Theater, Fort Pulaski, and the Tybee Island and Cockspur Lighthouses combine with the unique architectures of the island’s raised cottages to form a rich backdrop for history buffs. Attracting a strong artistic community, there are several local supporting art galleries. Keeping the island interesting year round are several arts festivals, the Annual Pirate Fest, the Beach Bum Parade, St Patrick’s Day celebrations, the Beach Bash, and the Christmas Parade, as well as fireworks displays on Independence and New Year’s Days off the Walter W. Parker Pier and Pavilion. The Marine Science Center cooperates with Georgia’s DNR to protect threatened sea turtle species by searching for nests, protecting their eggs, and making sure hatchlings make it to the sea. For visitor information, stop by http://www.tybeevisit.com/, and to find more about the City of Tybee Island, visit our web site at http://www.cityoftybee.org/.
About the Development Authority Main Street Program: The Tybee Island Development Authority/Main Street Program is managed by a staff person and a volunteer board of directors and committees working with partners to ensure the vision of improving the quality of life for those that live, work, and visit Tybee Island and enhancing the cultural experience while preserving the community's barrier island heritage. The program follows a strategic annual work plan which improves aspects of the town, while focusing on economic development within the context of historic preservation to enhance the quality of life and sense of place. With broad-based community support, it integrates a practical management strategy by using the proven Four-Point Approach®. For more information, visit http://www.tybeeislandmainstreet.com.
About Main Street America: Main Street America has been helping revitalize older and historic commercial districts for more than 35 years. Today, it is a network of more than 1,600 neighborhoods and communities, rural and urban, who share both a commitment to place and to building stronger communities through preservation-based economic development. Since 1980, communities participating in the program have leveraged more than $79.12 billion in new public and private investment, generated640,017 net new jobs and 143,613 net new businesses, and rehabilitated more than 284,936 buildings. Main Street America is a program of the nonprofit National Main Street Center, a subsidiary of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.