RALEIGH — The North Carolina Department of Commerce Main Street & Rural Planning Center released a new digital tool on the organization’s website to give residents and visitors of North Carolina the ability to explore the state’s 66 “Main Street” communities.  The tool, launched as a tourism-based economic development initiative, will be known as the NC Main to Main Trail, and is organized around each of the state’s eight prosperity zones.

“Main Street communities are economic engines for North Carolina,” said North Carolina Department of Commerce Secretary Machelle Baker Sanders in a statement.  “The new NC Main to Main Trail initiative is an additional opportunity to support the economic recovery of North Carolina’s rural communities and small businesses.”


According to the organization’s website, the NC Main to Main Trail tracks each of the selected “Main Street” communities in the state, identified starting in 1980.  Each city or town that receives the designation as a North Carolina Main Street community follows the “Main Street Approach™” in an effort to revitalize their downtown districts.

“We know that visitors are exploring regions of the state when they travel,” said Liz Parham, Director of the NC Main Street & Rural Planning Center.  “Our goal was to help visitors have a more enriched experience by leveraging the natural assets of the region, with the historic and cultural assets of our state’s downtown districts.