McKinney In Running for $150K Grant to Improve MPAC

The McKinney Performing Arts Center is the launching point for many downtown festivities. A $150,000 grant could help preserve the historic building (Photos courtesy McKinney Main Street)

McKinney officials have been lobbying for a few weeks now, but time is dwindling to increase their odds of winning a $150,000 grant that will be awarded based on daily votes by the public.

But if you want to vote and haven’t, you only have two sleeps to get it done — the contest wraps up tomorrow night.

The city’s downtown district is one of 25 chosen to compete for a 2017 Partners in Preservation: Main Streets #VoteYourMainStreet contest that will award $150,000 grants to help preserve aspects of their history.

If they win, McKinney will use the grant to help preserve the McKinney Performing Arts Center, which was home to the Collin County Courthouse until 1979.

“That $150,000 will be used to polish our gem,” said McKinney Mayor George Fuller.

Placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983, it was rehabbed into a performing arts center in 2005 and opened as the MPAC in 2006.

Since then, it has become the central spot for much of the downtown area festivities. In addition, more than 120 small businesses call downtown McKinney home, said Fuller.

“When you come to historic downtown McKinney, you know right away that you’re home,” said Amy Rosenthal, MPAC/Main Street Program Director.

“America’s Main Streets represent a diverse tapestry of our history and culture,” organizers of the #VoteYourMainStreet campaign said. “They also contribute to the local identity and vitality of our communities.”

“To put this into perspective, every dollar that is invested in a Main Street program spurs $32.56 of new investment in the community. In 2016, this amounted to 4.65 billion nationwide.”

Partners in Preservation was created by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and American Express. The contest runs until 11:59 p.m., Oct. 31, and you can vote once a day for up to five Main Street projects.

The Main Streets with the most votes at the end of the voting period will be awarded grants, until the full $2 million is distributed.