DCA Celebrates Tenth Year of Downtown Revitalization and Management Institute

Institute Provides Comprehensive Main Street Training

TRENTON, N.J. – Today, the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs (DCA) celebrated the beginning of its tenth annual Downtown Revitalization and Management Institute (DRMI) at Thomas Edison State College in Trenton .  The Institute provides comprehensive training on the internationally-recognized Main Street Approach™ to downtown revitalization, and is the first such state-wide initiative in the nation.

“Main Street New Jersey aids municipalities across the state in revitalizing and managing their downtowns,” said DCA Commissioner Joseph Doria, who welcomed DRMI’s newest participants at this morning’s session.  “The Institute is a key training tool that teaches local officials how to best begin implementing the principals of this program in their hometown.”

Begun in 1999, the DRMI holds training sessions four times a year.  The January sessions will focus on the theme “People, Money & Partnerships:  Organizing for Downtown Revitalization and Management”.  The majority of the participants for this session will be representatives of newly designated Main Street municipalities attending free of charge as a benefit of working with the MSNJ program.  Over 60 people will be attending and they will be trained on topics such as establishing and enhancing organizational identity, sustaining downtown management efforts with financial and other resources and effective non-profit management practices.  Training will conducted by various state and national experts on these topics.  Further sessions will be held at the end of April, July and October of this year.

Over 2,000 people have taken part in the DRMI since 1999, including individuals from Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Maine, New York and Pennsylvania.  Those attending all four sessions throughout the year graduate from the program and 100 individuals have done so since the Institute’s inception.  The DRMI is sponsored by the Office of Smart Growth and its Main Street New Jersey program.  The Office of Smart Growth is a DCA affiliate. 

Main Street New Jersey is the State’s comprehensive revitalization training and technical assistance program that promotes the historic and economic redevelopment of traditional business districts in New Jersey. Every two years the DCA accepts applications and designates selected communities to join the program.  DCA announced in December of last year the six newest members of the Main Street New Jersey program: Caldwell, Maple Shade, Montclair, Newton, Orange, and Somerville. 

For more information regarding Main Street New Jersey or the DRMI, call 609-633-9769, or log on to http://www.state.nj.us/dca/osg/resources/msnj/index.shtml. (www.mainstreetnewjersey.com)