About the Downtown Development Association of Lincolnton, Incorporated
The Downtown Development Association of Lincolnton is a 501(c)3 development organization, established in 1990 to facilitate successful and sustainable revitalization of Lincolnton’s historic commercial district. In 1995, Lincolnton became a designation North Carolina Main Street Community by the Department of Commerce and has received annual accreditation from the National Main Street Center as well as numerous achievement awards for individual projects, events, and overall revitalization efforts. The Lincolnton DDA operates through a public-private partnership, governed by a twenty- member Board of Directors with staff support by the City of Lincolnton Business & Community Development Department. The organization takes a comprehensive approach to downtown development through activities and projects encompassing The Main Street Four Point Approach® and Eight Guiding Principles. Goals and objectives are achieved through the board of directors and four standing workgroups: Design, Promotions, Economic Restructuring, and Organization. As a volunteer-driven organization, the Lincolnton DDA depends on hundreds of volunteers and several thousand volunteer hours each year.
The Downtown Development Association of Lincolnton is leading the way to develop and forge efforts to revitalize Lincolnton’s historic Downtown District as a vibrant, social and economic hub while preserving the community’s cultural heritage and enhancing the quality of life for residents, merchants, visitors and other stakeholders.
In 2017, local community stakeholders, Downtown Development Association of Lincolnton Board Members and Staff, City of Lincolnton Officials crated a shared vision for the future of Downtown Lincolnton. Further with the assistance of the North Carolina Main Street Community the current Vision Statement for our community was created, as seen below. The Downtown Development Association of Lincolnton establishes an annual Plan of Work with regard to economic development of the Central Business District and projects and activities specific to accomplishing goals and objectives derived from our Vision Statement.
“Tucked between the rolling hills of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the glow of the city lights of Charlotte aspiring business owners will find a nurturing atmosphere in downtown Lincolnton where they can grow and flourish. Downtown Lincolnton, is a hidden gem of opportunity as the hub of distinctive arts and artisans and active living…”
The Main Street Four Point Approach® to Downtown Revitalization
The Main Street Four-Point Approach® is a comprehensive revitalization process designed to improve all aspects of a downtown, producing both intangible and tangible benefits. Four elements are combined to create a well-balanced program.
Building partnerships to create a consistent revitalization program and develop effective management and leadership downtown.
Establishing downtown as a compelling place for shoppers, investors, and visitors. This means not only improving sales but also rekindling community excitement and involvement.
Enhancing the visual quality of the downtown.
Strengthening the district’s existing economic assets while diversifying its economic base.
The Main Street Philosophy – Eight Guiding Principles
The Main Street Four Point Approach succeeds only when combined with the following eight principles:
A single project cannot revitalize a downtown or commercial neighborhood. An ongoing series of initiatives is vital to build community support and create lasting progress.
Small projects make a big difference. They demonstrate that “things are happening” on Main Street and hone the skills and confidence the program will need to tackle more complex problems.
Although the National and North Carolina Main Street Centers and can provide valuable direction and hands-on technical assistance, only local leadership can initiate long-term success by fostering and demonstrating community involvement and commitment to the revitalization effort.
Every local Main Street program needs the support and expertise of both the public and private sectors. For an effective partnership, each must recognize the strengths and weaknesses of the other.
One of the program’s key goals is to help communities recognize and make the best use of their unique offerings. Local assets provide the solid foundation for a successful Main Street initiative.
From storefront design to promotional campaigns to special events, quality must be the main goal.
Changing community attitudes and habits is essential to bring about a commercial district renaissance. A carefully planned Main Street program will help shift public perceptions and practices to support and sustain the revitalization process.
Frequent, visible changes in the look and activities of the commercial district will reinforce the perception of positive change. Small, but dramatic improvements early in the process will remind the community that the revitalization effort is under way.
Board of Directors 2018
Tommy Huskey, Chair
Betty Flohr, Vice Chair
Wayne Hoyle, Treasurer
Judy Botkin, Secretary/Promotions
Anna Shields, Promotions
Jodi Huffman – Gaston College
Rhonda Hunter – Entrepreneur Specialist (LEDA)
Anita McCall – County Commissioner
Laura Morris – City Director of Community
Julie West – Public Affairs & Education – Chamber