Lexington and Wytheville, Va., are two of four new towns to be considered Virginia Main Street Communities. The Virginia Main Street Program, managed by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, works to revitalize select downtown economies, while preserving their historic value. Towns with a Main Street designation become eligible for certain grants, such as Downtown Improvement Grants that can provide up to $25,000 for one-time projects. Economic consulting services will also become available.
Main Street Lexington Executive Director Stephanie Wilkinson hopes to make use of the upper floors of downtown buildings for condos or small businesses. Wytheville plans on opening several new businesses over the summer in addition to the six that were established last year, and potentially more by the end of 2016. — Dylan Turner