The Maine Downtown Center

The Maine Development Foundation’s Maine Downtown Center, (MDC) program serves as a statewide resource for preservation-based downtown revitalization and serves as the state coordinator for the National Main Street Center’s Main Street Program. Established in 1999, MDC’s mission is to advance economic development in Maine downtowns using the 40-year-old Main Street Four-Point Approach®. The approach is considered one of the most powerful economic development tools in the nation for vibrant, healthy downtowns. We believe Main Streets are for everyone. At the core of our approach to revitalization is a commitment to creating places of shared prosperity, equal access to opportunity, and inclusive engagement.

MDC is staffed by Anne Ball, Senior Program Director, and Joanna Crispe, Program Director,

The Maine Downtown Center is working to stay updated on current developments related to the COVID-19 pandemic. For a comprehensive and current directory of resources please visit the Maine Department of Economic and Community Development’s Maine Resource Compass.

Main Street Maine

This almost 40-year-old approach has a reputation as one of the most powerful economic development tools in the nation for vibrant, healthy downtowns.

Maine Downtown Affiliates

MDA is ideal for communities in the early stages of downtown revitalization as well as for those communities working toward achieving “Main Street” designation.

Does My Town Qualify?

Learn how becoming a Main Street Maine or Downtown Affiliate may be right for your downtown or neighborhood business district.

Getting Started

These three steps will get you started towards becoming a Main Street Maine or Maine Downtown Affiliate community

Main Street Fellows

The Main Street Fellows AmeriCorps Program allows Fellows to apply their skills and gain place-based experience helping to increase equity, local resilience, and social capital in MDC communities.

MDC Events and Programs

Our events and educational programs provide the essential training every community leader must know to boost the local downtown economy and leave a lasting legacy.

Funding Opportunities

MDC regularly seeks funding that will benefit our member communities whether it be for historic preservation, training, technical assistance to small downtown businesses, or many other opportunities as they arise.

MDC Advisory Council

The Maine Downtown Center is grateful for the the critical insight and support of our volunteer Advisory Council.

MDC Members Area

The members area contains current opportunities, local data, informational resources, and member documents. It is only open to MDC Main Street and Affiliate members.

Maine Downtown Center currently has 10 nationally designated Main Street Maine programs, 13 state designated Maine Downtown Affiliate programs, and works with scores of other communities on revitalization and improvement efforts. Explore our interactive map to learn more about the communities where we have an impact.

“Downtowns don’t just happen by accident.  Reny’s values the Maine Downtown Center’s work and approach to downtown revitalization.  The Main Street approach is comprehensive, market-based and community led. The Main Street communities create an environment where it makes it a little easier to get a business off the ground and where businesses are more likely to succeed.  Reny’s has been attracted to these communities for many years when opening a new storefront.”  

Mary Kate Reny, 2018 Reny’s Department Stores

Find out how the Main Street program works and why this 40 + year old approach to downtown revitalization is so successful!

Hear Ed McMahon, chair of the National Main Street Center, give a rousing presentation on the principles of community revitalization and Maine Downtown Center.