The working group for the Sweet Auburn National Treasure which consists of National Trust staff, Trustee, Trustee Emeritus, Partner, an Atlanta City Councilman, and a Fulton County Supervisor conducts weekly conference calls in coordinating the vision of revitalizing the historic commercial district with its historic integrity intact. After two visits to Sweet Auburn and many phone calls with stake holders, Teresa Lynch, senior program officer with National Trust Main Street, produced an assessment report. The report which was distributed to every stake holder within the historic district was the focus of a meeting held on Thursday, January 31, 2013 which was attended by an enthusiastic and standing room only crowd. Additionally, the group was addressed by Anwar Saleem, Executive Director of H Street Main Street in Washington, DC. The successful H Street Main Street experienced some of the same opportunities and challenges that Sweet Auburn has, now and will experience, including the addition of a street car.
The newly formed Main Street organization has incorporated within the state of Georgia as Sweet Auburn Works with the non-profit status filed and pending. Sweet Auburn Works is an organization that will guide the revitalization process, develop a strategic plan, promote neighborhood assets, and encourage reinvestment in business and property development, while also protecting the historic character of the neighborhood.
The focus is now crafting a fundraising plan to raise startup funds that can hire an executive director and sustain Sweet Auburn Works for the next three years. This is timely because the infrastructure is currently being laid for the streetcar project which is expected to boost economic activity in the neighborhood by drawing visitors from Centennial Park to the King National Historic Site.