The Tennessee Department of Economic & Community Development announced that Sevierville has achieved Tennessee Main Street Certification. Sevierville, Bolivar and McKenzie join the ranks of twenty-eight Tennessee Main Street communities that are certified through the state’s downtown revitalization program and accredited by the National Main Street Center.
The Sevierville Commons Association, a non-profit comprised of local community members who believe that downtown Sevierville’s long term success will be in creating an atmosphere that attracts residents and visitors to not only do business in downtown Sevierville, but to spend leisure time on her streets and in her stores as well, is focused on creating an environment that is attractive to developers, retail, restaurants and residents.
“We congratulate these communities for the efforts they are putting into revitalizing their downtown commercial districts,” Economic and Community Development Commissioner Randy Boyd said. “The vitality of the downtown core reflects on the entire community and offers economic opportunity, and we look forward to working with these communities as they continue their hard work.”
Sevierville Commons Association Chairman Alex Johnson says, “We have worked for more than two years to reach this point. While we have seen some new businesses open in downtown Sevierville, our goal is to grow the number of restaurants, retail and residential business in downtown. We believe that participation in Tennessee’s Main Street program will provide the tools and resources to help us succeed.”
Tennessee Main Street designations are based upon successful applications submitted by the cities. The Tennessee Main Street Program application requires communities to illustrate a strong commitment to a Main Street Program from city/county government, an adequate organizational budget, a commitment to hire staff, a strong historic preservation ethic, a collection of historic buildings and a walkable, historic commercial district.
“Each of the three newly designated communities has unique assets,” said Tennessee Main Street Program Director Nancy Williams. “But, like the other 28 Tennessee Main Streets, they each have a downtown district that the communities treasure. Although new to Main Street, Bolivar has long been part of Courthouse Square revitalization efforts with outstanding natural and historic resources, and McKenzie is a successful graduate of TNECD’s Tennessee Downtowns program with a plan for their future. Sevierville is widely recognized as one of the retail hubs of East Tennessee, but there is an historic side of Sevierville worthy of preservation.”
Other Tennessee Main Street program communities across Tennessee include Bristol, Brownsville, Cleveland, Collierville, Columbia, Cookeville, Dandridge, Dayton, Dyersburg, Fayetteville, Franklin, Gallatin, Greeneville, Jackson, Jonesborough, Lebanon, Kingsport, Lawrenceburg, McMinnville, Murfreesboro, Morristown, Ripley, Rogersville, Sweetwater, Tiptonville, Savannah, Union City and Winchester.