‘Oregon Main Street’ adds Canyonville, Riddle to revitalize downtown areas

JACKSON COUNTY, Ore. —One state organization is helping improve downtown areas around the state. It’s called Oregon Main Street.

It helps communities bring their historic downtowns back to life. The goal is to create a lasting impact that it hopes can trickle into the community.

“We help communities that have historic downtowns or traditional commercial neighborhood districts bring those back to life,” said Oregon Main Street Coordinator, Sheri Stuart.

Traditionally the downtown of a community marks the heart of it. Oregon Main Street leads a network of local programs that oversee a wide range of efforts to build community support local businesses and create an attractive and vibrant environment for workers, visitors, and residents.

“We go in help them build that local structure and identify those goals and objectives and projects and activities that they can begin to turn the needle on where their community is at,” said Stuart.

It’s part of the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. It helps communities start the process of what they hope to achieve and works with them to find resources for their revitalization efforts.

“It’s those beautiful things that help make things feel more vibrant and pedestrian-friendly so everything from streetscape improvements to flower baskets, public art, all of those things that create that inviting and welcoming atmosphere,” said Stuart.

Main Street has 100 communities throughout the state of Oregon. Locally Medford, Klamath Falls, Coos Bay, Cave Junction, Lakeview, Gold beach, North Bend, and Bandon are all part of the network.

Canyonville and Riddle are two of four new communities that just joined the network.

“A group of business owners individuals and city government came together and decided we would like to focus on revitalizing downtown,” said Canyonville business owner, Brandi Gross.

Gross jump-started the effort in her town. She hopes to clean up downtown, and help get businesses back in vacant buildings.

“We don’t know what we’re doing so we need guidance and they are the pros at doing this so we’re really excited because we feel like this will help us focus and prioritize and make things happen,” said Gross.

Any community with a historic district can apply to be part of the Oregon Main Street Network.

You can learn more here.

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Jenna King is the 6pm anchor and our Feature Reporter at 10pm and 11pm for NBC5 News. Jenna is a Burbank, CA native. She graduated from the University of Oregon with a degree in Broadcast Journalism and a minor in Sports Business. During her time at Oregon she was part of the student-run television station, Duck TV. She also grew her passion for sports through her internship with the PAC 12 Network. When Jenna is not in the newsroom you can find her rooting for her hometown Dodgers, exploring the outdoors or binging on the latest Netflix release.
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