Connecticut Main Street Center Logo
Our mission is to be the catalyst that ignites Connecticut's Main Streets as the cornerstone of thriving communities.
New Year, New Possibilities!
The year couldn't be off to a better start as we welcome new members, new opportunities to help Connecticut's downtowns and renewed support from our Founding Sponsor, Eversource! We have great things in store as we look forward to celebrating our member downtowns with a photo display at the Capitol and a fresh new take on adaptive reuse during our upcoming summit. Read on to learn how can you be a part of the fun! 

Thank You, Eversource!
CMSC Board Member & Eversource Community Relations Specialist Toni Berlandy is joined by several colleagues at our recent  VIBRANT MAIN STREETS  celebration in downtown Danbury.
Eversource Energy recently demonstrated their continued commitment to CMSC and Connecticut's downtowns and Main Streets with an $85,000 donation in support of CMSC's programs and operations.
Eversource Energy  (then CL&P) established the CT Main Street Program over 20 years ago after recognizing there was no comprehensive approach to revitalizing our historic commercial districts. Concerned with protecting their significant investment in infrastructure in the State's downtowns, they provided the funding and administrative resources to establish the Connecticut Main Street Program. To this day, Eversource remains the only private corporation in the country to solely sponsor and administer a statewide Main Street initiative.
has continued to invest in our work, even after CMSC became an independent non-profit in 1999, offering critical financial support and office space in their Sheldon Street location. Because of their generous support, we've been able to teach Connecticut communities how to cultivate great downtowns that foster economic development, grow jobs and businesses, and encourage character-rich places for people to live, work and visit.
Eversource supports many endeavors that strengthen communities and bring people together, from the Eversource Hartford Marathon to the Special Olympics to the United Way and beyond. CMSC is proud to be counted among the many organizations Eversource supports. We have a wonderful partner in Eversource, as they serve on our Board, support our programs, and collaborate on important issues like Historic Tax Credits, and we look forward to continuing to work together to support Connecticut's downtowns and Main Streets.
CMSC Welcomes New Members Coventry &  
East Haddam
CMSC is thrilled to welcome the Towns of Coventry and East Haddam to our member network!  
Coventry Village Main Street Partners, an organization of public and private sector stakeholders, has formed to develop strategies that will enhance the vibrancy of the village center. The organization met with CMSC staff in November and is currently developing their 2019 Action Plan.
CMSC also looks forward to working with East Haddam as they focus on their village center area, a location well-known to fans of the historic and beautifully scenic Goodspeed Opera House.
Together, they join a network of over 80 communities statewide that are working to revitalize their downtowns and commercial centers. With CMSC's assistance, these communities are cultivating the core components of a healthy downtown: Place, Economic Vitality, Stewardship, Inclusiveness, Sustainability and Transportation.
Hidden in Plain Sight: An Adaptive Reuse Summit
Join CMSC and CT Preservation Action (CPA) for Hidden in Plain Sight, an adaptive reuse summit on overcoming the challenges and financing the potential of these historic diamonds in the rough. This event, sponsored by the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), is perfect for anyone interested in developing CT's downtowns for the future. Hidden in Plain Sight will host national speakers James Lindberg, Bob Stevens and Merrill Hoopengardner, and two afternoon panels will feature local speakers including developers, municipal officials, historic preservationists and financiers. This event is being offered at two locations: on February 28th in Hartford and on March 1st in NorwalkCost is $50 to attend. 
Click for more info & to register
CT Office of the Arts Accepting Applications for Arts Workforce Initiative Program
COA is currently accepting applications from organizations interested in serving as an AWI Host Organization for its 2019 Arts Workforce Initiative (AWI) Program. AWI provides internship opportunities for Connecticut college students, emerging creative professionals and military veterans at Connecticut not-for-profit arts and cultural organizations. Selected host organizations will receive a grant from the CT Office of the Arts in the amount of $3,750 and will pay the intern at the rate of $15 per hour. Applications are due by February 11th. 
Re-Mains of the Day
▪  Upcoming Webinar: Opportunity Zones and the Preservation Community - Learn about the potential opportunities and issues for preservation created by Opportunity Zones, a new federal incentive during this January 17th webinar. Speakers include: Alexander Flachsbart, Founder and CEO, Opportunity Alabama; Merrill Hoopengardner, President, National Trust Community Investment Corporation; Bonnie McDonald, President and CEO, Landmarks Illinois; Forrest David Milder, Nixon Peabody; and Anthony Veerkamp, National Trust for Historic Preservation. Moderator: Jim Igoe, Preservation Massachusetts. 

CMSC Photo Exhibit at the LOB - CMSC will host a photo display featuring many of its members from February 1-14 in the Lower Concourse of the Legislative Office Building (LOB). The display is free and open to the public. Stop by or encourage your local representative to take a look. 

CMSC to help Enfield establish new TIF District - CMSC was recently contracted  by the Town of Enfield to develop a new TIF district focused on Thompsonville. CMSC CEO Patrick McMahon will be leading the charge with a preliminary plan due to go before the town council by early February. Learn more here  

Waterbury Book Signing - Chris Wigren of the CT Trust for Historic Preservation recently published a book highlighting some of CT's most notable architecture. Chris will host a book signing on January 30th for Connecticut Architecture: Stories of 100 Places at  Waterbury City Hall, one of the featured properties. According to one reader, "the book casts light on some of the jewels of CT's Main Streets". See the event announcement
Spotlight on 2018 Award of Excellence Winner
Light Up New London! 
Recipients: New London Main Street
Partners: Dominion Foundation, National Main Street Center

When the Garde Arts Center, a downtown anchor on upper State Street, made the tough decision to turn off its marquee due to budget constraints, the downtown suddenly lost its glow, and without it upper State Street became much, much darker.

In order to make downtown New London brighter and more welcoming, New London Main Street created Light Up New London! working with store owners and property owners to install LED lights inside storefront windows. As a result, the historic waterfront district feels safer, friendlier, and more welcoming, creating a positive perception for the downtown.

Connecticut Main Street Center

The Sponsors of our  
Main Street Forums for the 21st Century

And our Partner Organizations:

CT Chapter, American Planning Association
Cultural Alliance of Fairfield County
CT Economic Development  Association
Institute for Sustainable Energy
CT Economic Resource Center
Local Initiatives Support Corporation
CT Housing Finance Authority
Main Street America
CT Preservation Action
Partnership for Strong Communities
CT Urban Legal Initiative
Pro Bono Partnership