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City seeks Main Street Alabama inclusion

News Staff Writer

Atmore City Council members, meeting Monday, April 13, gave the OK to a resolution seeking inclusion in the Main Street downtown revitalization program. They also learned that the city wouldn’t have to put any money into impending upgrades at Atmore Municipal Airport.
The Main Street resolution, which gained unanimous approval of the full council, was the only business item on the agenda for the panel’s second teleconference meeting of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This is something we spoke about quite a while back,” Mayor Jim staff explained before District 4’s Susan Smith made a motion, District 1’s Webb Nall seconded it and all five council members voted in favor of the resolution.
Main Street Alabama is focused on bringing jobs, dollars and people back to Alabama’s historic communities. Economic development is at the heart of the statewide organization’s efforts to revitalize downtowns and neighborhoods.
The non-profit organization is affiliated with the National Main Street Center and utilizes the Main Street Four-Point Approach, which has proven valuable in helping communities organize themselves for success, improve the design of their neighborhoods, promote their districts and enhance their economic base.
According to the resolution, the “specific goal” of the application is “revitalizing the downtown or neighborhood commercial districts within the context of the preservation and rehabilitation of its historic buildings.”
The resolution further includes that, if selected, the city guarantees the employment of a Main Street Program Manager, who will have an operating budget and a travel budget.
Just prior to adjournment of the meeting, Staff informed the council of the airport maintenance news.
“One good thing we’ll get out of the coronavirus epidemic is that our project for maintenance at the airport will be 100 percent paid for,” the mayor said.
Staff said after the meeting that the Federal Aviation Administration will foot the bill for a project that includes restriping and sealing cracks in the airport runway’s pavement. The mayor said the upgrades are expected to cost “around $260,000,” although bids won’t be let until near the end of April.
“Our part probably wouldn’t be but around $14,600; (the FAA) usually pays 95 percent anyway, but it is a savings,” he said of the funds, which will come from the CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) Airport Grant Act. “This will make our runway look like a new one.”