Theses (Historic Preservation)

Document Type

Thesis or dissertation

Date of this Version

January 2005


Presented to the Faculties of the University of Pennsylvania in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science in Historic Preservation 2005.
Advisor: Randall F. Mason


I am very interested in why Main Street communities decided to become inactive. When I was first introduced to the Main Street Program in Oklahoma in 2001, I thought the program an interesting way to help with the preservation of historic buildings while dealing with the future livelihood of these communities. I interned with the Oklahoma Main Street Center for a year as an architectural intern and visited many of the participating communities I had never seen before. I learned quickly that while some communities were very successful others were having a more difficult time. Others, which had been successful, had become stagnant in their efforts. I wondered at the time why this was and how the program could better assist them. Now I wonder if the Main Street Program has come to the end of its useful life and other economic development activities would be more helpful to the communities as long as they did not forget the lessons they learned. Through this problem focus in my Master’s Thesis, I hope to better understand why the communities become inactive and if there is a better option for economic development while preserving their historic infrastructure.



Date Posted: 27 October 2006