The Texas Main Street Program, part of the Texas Historical Commission’s Community Heritage Development Division, helps Texas cities revitalize their historic downtowns and neighborhood commercial districts by utilizing preservation and economic development strategies.
The program began in 1981 and is affiliated with the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Today there are 86 Texas Main Street programs representing more than 2.6 million in population. The programs are in cities and commercial neighborhood districts of all population sizes, ranging from less than 1,000 to more than 200,000, and in all areas of Texas. Over time, Texas Main Street communities have realized more than $2 billion in economic reinvestment, the creation of almost 25,000 local jobs and the expansion or creation of almost 6,400 businesses in their Main Street districts (as of 12/08). These reinvestments show that significant economic development impact can be realized through historic preservation. Texas Main Street programs also work toward sustainable revitalization efforts; the average length of time that local programs have been officially recognized is 12 years.