About Historic Manassas, Inc.
Historic Manassas, Inc. (HMI) is a 501(c) (3) charitable, non-profit corporation funded by private donations and the City of Manassas. Since February 1986, HMI has been leading the revitalization and promotion of Old Town Manassas.
What is the Main Street Program?
In 1985, Virginia established a statewide Main Street program based on a downtown revitalization concept developed by the National Main Street Center. Main Street is a comprehensive approach to regenerating the economic vitality of downtown commercial districts, built around a community's unique heritage and attributes. The program features a comprehensive strategy that includes the following four elements.
Design, Promotion, Economic Restructuring, Organization
Design enhances the visual quality of downtown by addressing elements of the commercial environment such as buildings, store fronts, banners, and window displays.
Promotion creates and markets a positive image of downtown to attract customers and investors by developing special events, festivals, and retail sales promotions. Promotion also includes a public relations strategy, and attractive graphic and media presentations.
Economic restructuring strengthens downtown’s existing economic resources and fulfill its broadest market potential by improving the diversity of merchants; recruiting new businesses; and converting unused space into housing, offices, or cultural facilities.
Organization establishes consensus and cooperation by building long-term partnerships among merchants, property owners, local officials, and community residents.
What Has HMI Accomplished?
Historic Manassas, Inc. was formed to promote a positive image of downtown Manassas and to perpetuate its revitalization. To reach these goals, the organization proudly plays a leadership role in community issues. HMI also acts as a clearinghouse for valuable information and services that retailers and property owners can use to improve their businesses and buildings.
HMI promotes Old Town Manassas by sponsoring special events throughout the year to bring local residents and visitors downtown, and to reinforce the identity of the historic area. HMI also organizes a co-op advertising program for the businesses of Old Town, making both television and print advertising affordable to small business owners.
HMI has been instrumental in providing Old Town Manassas with a unifying visual concept to enhance its identity. The historic district is identified through facade design, new construction design, and distinctive signage. HMI sponsors the banners on the lamp posts in Old Town, and works closely with the Beautification Committee and the Manassas Garden Club to plant flowers along the streets of Old Town.
HMI also has a contract with the city to operate the Manassas Visitor Center, a state-accredited center which is open seven days a week. Our state accreditation allows us to have signage along the nearby interstate freeways to direct travelers to the Visitor Center.
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