The Old Town Development Board, funded primarily through a special assessment on properties within the commercial historic district, operates as an advisory board to the City Council of the City of Winchester for the primary and secondary Old Town assessment districts. The Old Town Development Board is responsible to advise the City Council for the improvement, maintenance, development, planning, and promotion of Old Town Winchester. Appointed by the Winchester Common Council, the Board is made up of no more than eleven representing downtown property owners, business owners, the City of Winchester, and the County of Frederick. The Board meets the first Thursday of each month at 5:30 p.m. in Rouss City Hall, 4th Floor Exhibit Hall at 15 North Cameron Street, Winchester, Virginia.
Winchester’s concentrated downtown revitalization effort began with its designation as a Virginia Main Street Community in 1985 by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development. It was one of the first five localities in Virginia to receive this designation. The Main Street Approach provides a flexible framework that puts the traditional assets of downtown, such as unique architecture and locally-owned businesses, to work as a catalyst for economic growth and community pride.
The efforts of the Winchester Old Town Development Board have earned it recognition for excellence in the field of downtown revitalization by meeting high standards of performance set by the Virginia Main Street Program and the National Trust for Historic Preservations National Main Street Center. Since its inception as a Main Street Program in 1985, Winchester recognizes more than $110 million dollars in private investment toward preserving the historic character of downtown Winchester. More than 390 net new businesses have opened and over 1,400 new jobs have been created.