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Main Street revival 

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Since the Arkansas Times is headquartered in downtown Little Rock and a stone's throw from Argenta, we've long paid special attention to the area's development. In the last decade, we've put out three publications focusing on downtown revitalization, filled with the visions and visionaries. A striking number of the plans we previewed came to pass. In that spirit, this week we again turn our attention to downtown with a special focus on Main Street.

In what's below, we linger only briefly on the past — that story, of the ascendancy of Main Streets everywhere and the suburbanization and urban renewal of cities that led to their decline, is a familiar one. Instead, we turn our attention to the present, to some of the businesses that have survived through moribund stretches, to the leaders and developers and property owners at the vanguard of revival efforts and to the people who're drawn to live downtown. The Creative Corridor plan for Little Rock's Main Street that we survey is decidedly aspirational, but many of the other future projects on both sides of the river that we feature have funding and target dates behind them; Mayor Mark Stodola likes to estimate new downtown investment at $60 million; a single investment group that includes John Gaudin and Harold Tenenbaum estimate the amount of dollars they've put into revitalization north of the river at $20 million. However much the numbers are, it's starting to show.

We predict that even those skeptical of a true Main Street revival will find cause for optimism.

Little Rock

Slideshow
The revitalization of Little Rock's Main Street
Outside Mann Lofts KLofts Exchange Building Parking lot West side of Main Architect’s rendering of the Arkansas Building after renovation The State Bank Building, Little Rock’s second skyscraper in 1909, more recently known as the Boyle Building. Second floor of the Arkansas Building will be converted to apartments Arkansas Repertory Theatre

The revitalization of Little Rock's Main Street

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Slideshow
Main Street Little Rock block-by-block
200 Main (East) 300 Main (West) 300 Main (East) 400 Main (East) 500 Main (West 600 Main (East) 500 Main (East) 600 Main (West)

Main Street Little Rock block-by-block

What's there, what's coming.

Click to View 23 slides

Little Rock downtowners
Community without the commute.
By Leslie Newell Peacock

Moses, Tucker and downtown Little Rock
Nearly synonymous.
By Leslie Newell Peacock

When buildings play movies
The Creative Corridor plan for Little Rock.
By Lindsey Millar

Warren Stephens: all business
Says Main Street needs private dollars to boom.
By Leslie Newell Peacock

Dreams for a decade, action now
A Q&A with Bob Hupp.
By Robert Bell

Anita Davis: the distaff side of Main
She nurtures new life, with garden and more.
By Leslie Newell Peacock

North Little Rock

Slideshow
Main Street Revitalization in North Little Rock
Market Square Market Square Old Post Office (William F. Laman Public Library System Argenta Branch) 406 Main

Main Street Revitalization in North Little Rock

Click to View 5 slides

Slideshow
Main Street North Little Rock block-by-block
300 Main (East) 300 Main (West) 400 Main (East) 400 Main (West) 500 Main (East) 500 Main (West)

Main Street North Little Rock block-by-block

By Brian Chilson

Click to View 7 slides

Starting from the top, in Argenta

The role of art on Main in North Little Rock

The Baker House's Scott Miller
On the appeal of Argenta.
By David Koon

Main Street Survivors

Bennett's has seen three centuries
by David Koon

Mr. Cool caters to adventurous dressers
By David Koon

Obscure titles and a well-stocked X-rated section have kept RAO video alive
by David Koon

Argenta Drug is living history
by David Koon

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