2013 Annual Report Shows 15 Years of Sustained Growth in Downtown Kingsport

2013 Annual Report Shows 15 Years of Sustained Growth in Downtown Kingsport

KINGSPORT – The Sullivan County Property Assessor’s records indicate that Downtown Kingsport property values increased by more than $8 million during calendar year 2013.  Building permits for the year totaled $1.4 million.  Property values have steadily increased for 15 continuous years.

“There wasn’t any single, largKingsport_Downtowne building permit or development, rather there were many small remodeling and rehabilitation projects across the Downtown area,” said Jeff Fleming, Assistant City Manager for Development.

Since 1999, total downtown property values have nearly doubled, increasing by $72.5 million.

“Downtown is a priority,” Fleming said, “it’s what makes Kingsport, well, Kingsport.  It’s our personality.”

Fleming serves as city staff liaison to the Downtown Kingsport Association and Model City Coalition.

“We have continued to make progress on all fronts for sustained periods,” Fleming said.  “Educational attainment is up, median household income is up, unemployment is down, retail sales are up.  We tend to look at monthly or quarterly reports, but it’s important to zoom-out and look at trends from a longer term view.”

The information is gathered annually in compliance with Kingsport’s designation as an official Main Street Community (www.TennesseeMainStreet.org) by the Tennessee Department of Economic & Community Development.   Tennessee’s program is an affiliate of the National Main Street program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation (www.preservationnation.org/main-street)

“Our partnership with the City helps us tell our downtown success story,” said Sherri Mosley, executive director of the Downtown Kingsport Association.  “By participating in the Main Street program, we share ideas and resources with other progressive communities across the state and nation.”

“2013 was a tough year for Downtown due to the unprecedented flooding, but I’m happy to see the numbers illustrate that we overcame and even thrived due to the tireless efforts of many, many people who love our historic Downtown.  In 2014, look for us to redouble our efforts to help our merchants with marketing initiatives, promotions, special events, and economic restructuring,” Mosley added.

“Downtown is open for business,” she said.