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Davidson’s Main Street Named One of 15 Great Places in America by the American Planning Association

APA’s Annual List Recognizes 15 Great Neighborhoods, Streets, and Public Spaces

The American Planning Association (APA) today named Main Street in Davidson, North Carolina, as one of five Great Streets on the organization’s annual Great Places in America list.

As part of National Community Planning Month, APA’s Great Places in America program recognizes streets, neighborhoods, and public spaces in the United States demonstrating exceptional character, quality, and planning—attributes that enrich communities, facilitate economic growth, and inspire others around the country. The Great Neighborhoods, Great Streets, and Great Public Spaces of 2016 are places that are unique and exemplary in their amenities and infrastructure, cultural identity, and use of sustainable and innovative practices.

“This year’s designees highlight the power of a single well planned street to stimulate economic activity and energize an entire community,” said Carol Rhea, FAICP, president of APA. “We applaud those who have worked hard through careful planning, public engagement, and innovation to create better places to live, work, play, and visit—one street at a time.”

Since launching the Great Places in America program in 2007, APA has recognized 260 neighborhoods, streets, and public spaces around the country. Places are selected annually and represent the gold standard in terms of having a true sense of place, cultural and historical interest, community involvement, and a vision for the future.
For 200 years Main Street has been both the physical and symbolic backbone of the Town of Davidson. The street’s distinct character and historic charm have proved resilient over the course of time through the efforts of an engaged community and remains a destination for residents and visitors. 

“We are honored to receive this recognition by the American Planning Association,” said Davidson Mayor John Woods. “Since it’s the site of many of our signature events like the Halloween March and Christmas in Davidson, and the location of many historic buildings and vibrant shops, restaurant, offices, and homes, Main Street is what provides our sense of community and binds us together.”

The Town of Davidson will celebrate this recognition on Friday, October 28 at 4:45 p.m. on the Davidson Town Hall front steps, just before the Halloween March, one of the town’s signature events along Main Street. Citizens are invited to attend.

In addition to Davidson’s Main Street, APA also recognized the following streets this year: 
•    Sherman Avenue - Coeur d’Alene, Idaho
•    Main Street - Ketchum, Idaho
•    South 24th Street - Albuquerque, New Mexico 
•    Arthur Avenue - Bronx, New York

For more information about these streets, as well as APA’s Great Neighborhoods and Public Spaces for 2016 and previous years, visit www.planning.org/greatplaces. 

Additionally, for the third year, members of the public can suggest their favorite public space, neighborhood, or street to earn a “People’s Choice” designation. During the first half of October, individuals can offer suggestions via APA’s social media channels using the hashtag #APAgreatplaces. APA will select five finalists that the public can vote on via APA’s website. The “People’s Choice” winner is announced in early November 2016. 
The Great Places in America announcement launches APA’s National Community Planning Month celebration. The month of October if a time to highlight the ways in which good planning creates communities of lasting value for all. For more about National Community Planning Month, visit www.planning.org/ncpm.

The American Planning Association is an independent, not- for-profit educational organization that provides leadership in the development of vital communities. APA and its professional institute, the American Institute of Certified Planners, are dedicated to advancing the art, science and profession of good planning -- physical, economic and social -- so as to create communities that offer better choices for where and how people work and live. Members of APA help create communities of lasting value and encourage civic leaders, business interests and citizens to play a meaningful role in creating communities that enrich people's lives. APA has offices in Washington, D.C., and Chicago. For more information, visit www.planning.org.

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