Waterford, Michigan -- Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson today honored and recognized nine Main Street Oakland County (MSOC) communities for their accreditation by the National Main Street Center in Washington D.C. – the most ever in the MSOC program – and detailed investment in downtowns that total more than half a billion dollars in the first decade of the program.
"Main Street Oakland County continues to thrive as one of the model Main Street programs in the country," Patterson said. "Oakland County has long prided itself on its enviable quality of life. Main Street revitalizes and rejuvenates these downtowns. The success of the program speaks to our commitment to our businesses and our residents."
Patterson presented representatives from each of the nine MSOC communities with a plaque honoring them for their accomplishment during a news conference and rally at the Crofoot Ballroom in Pontiac. The communities being honored were: Farmington, Ferndale, Highland, Holly, Lake Orion, Ortonville, Oxford, Rochester and Walled Lake.
Patterson noted the economic impact MSOC has had in its first decade:
- $540 million of investment in the 11 MSOC downtowns
- More than 4,000 jobs created
- 407 new business established
- More than 2.7 million square feet of new floor space (primarily retail) constructed
- More than $6 million in cash sponsorships for events and programs
- More than 129,000 volunteer hours
Patterson also lauded the member downtowns for their economic performance in 2009 which brought $19 million of new investment, created 19 businesses, constructed 11 buildings, and renovated 237 others while creating more than 300 jobs.
"These are astounding investment figures, considering the beating we've taken as a region and a state," Patterson said. "I thank the communities for their hard work and commitment to our downtowns. This is a program that really works."
Main Street is a trademarked program of the National Main Street Center in Washington, D.C. Farmington, Ferndale, Franklin, Highland, Holly, Lake Orion, Ortonville, Oxford, Pontiac, Rochester and Walled Lake are MSOC communities. Berkley, Clarkston, Clawson, Hazel Park, Leonard, South Lyon and Waterford participate in the mentoring program.
Oakland County was the first county in the United States to operate a full fledged county-wide Main Street program for the 32 distinct, historic downtowns in Oakland County. The county program was formed in 2000.
For more information, see the MSOC website, www.mainstreetoaklandcounty.com.