The Community Revitalization Academy (CRA) is a series of five (5) two-day workshops designed to provide first year Main Street managers, Elm Street managers, and other interested revitalization professionals with intermediate level instruction based on the Main Street Approach of the National Trust for Historic Preservation's Main Street Program and the Five-Point Approach of the Pennsylvania Elm Street Program. While these two programs have slight variations in the nomenclature and certain program activities, there is a high degree of consistency in the training required to effectively and efficiently implement these programs.

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(Pre-Registration is required)


Course descriptions

Course 1: Organization

During this course, organizational development for community revitalization is explored. Some topics that are explored include organizational governance, financial planning, and building community partnerships. The Organization Course will outline the foundation on which is needed to build community revitalization efforts.

Course 2: Design

The design course tackles issues around physical Improvements and other design considerations. Topics that are highlighted involve the design committee's roles, elements of design, facade renovation programs, parking issues, and zoning. Both Main Street programs and Elm Street programs will benefit from further presentations on curb appeal for neighborhood revitalization and visual merchandising for downtown merchants.

Course 3: Marketing

Learn how to promote and develop your community through basic marketing techniques. Branding and identity issues are broadly and specifically addressed. How to implement special events programs in your neighborhoods and business corridors is also explored. You will also learn how to analyze market data and gather skills to help determine when your community is ready to implement transitional marketing. And no marketing session would be complete without some focus on social networking and media relations - this course has it all.

Course 4: Asset Enhancement

The "Asset Enhancement" Academy, a combination of the economic vitality function of Main Street and neighbors and economy function of Elm Street, deals with the economic and social components of this triple-bottom line. The course will also explore how to link your community's vision with your economic development strategy. Vacant lots, real estate, and social service organizations are other areas of concentration during this course.

Course 5: Safe, Clean & Green

The foundation for any revitalization effort is 'Safe, Clean & Green.' Block watch concepts, crime prevention and clean up programs are all explored. Creative ways to implement an environmentally friendly philosophy in your community is also explored in depth.

Course information

CRA's are scheduled to begin at for 9:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. on both days. A light continental breakfast is available starting at 8:30 a.m. on both days as well. Lunch is not provided.

All academies are held at the Pennsylvania Downtown Center's office in the Historic Harrisburg Association Meeting Room - 1230 North 3rd Street, Harrisburg, PA.

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To register and receive an invoice please click the button below (An invoice will be emailed to the address provided in 1-2 business days):

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Contact for more information

Maria Wherley