Investing in Connecticut’s Main Streets

CMSC’s original logo, which was changed in 2014 to better reflect our dynamic activity and that of our downtowns.

The Connecticut Main Street Program was established by the Connecticut Light & Power Company (CL&P) in 1995. At the time, CL&P (now Eversource Energy) recognized there was no comprehensive approach to revitalizing our historic commercial districts, and they were concerned with protecting their significant investment in infrastructure in the State’s downtowns.  As a result, they decided to provide the funding and internal administrative resources to establish the Connecticut Main Street Program. To this day, CL&P remains the only private corporation in the country to solely sponsor and administer a statewide Main Street initiative.

Realizing it would be necessary to gather a combination of public and private support to grow Connecticut Main Street, CL&P proposed restructuring the program.  In 1999, with the support of then-Lt. Governor M. Jodi Rell, Connecticut Main Street Center (CMSC) became a private nonprofit corporation with its own board of directors.  In 2000, and continuing through the present day, the State of Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) joined CL&P as a Founding Partner.


Our Founding Sponsors

Eversource Energy is a major sponsor of Connecticut Main Street Center, underscoring its historic and ongoing commitment to the communities it serves.  Formerly known as CL&P, they were the 2006 recipient of the coveted National Main Street Business Leadership Award in recognition of its steadfast financing and administrative commitment to the Connecticut Main Street program.  To date, they remain the only private corporation in the country to solely sponsor and administer a statewide Main Street initiative. Visit their website at

PrintThe State of Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development’s partnership with CMSC makes good sense for Connecticut’s downtowns.  Long-term planning, economic and community development, and historic preservation are all activities we collaborate on to create healthy communities. Visit their website at

Our Growth Sponsors

UIL Holdings (formerly the United Illuminating Company (UI)) is a New Haven-based regional distribution utility established in 1899.  They engage in the purchase, transmission, distribution and sale of electricity and related services to more than 324,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers in the Greater New Haven and Bridgeport areas. UIL Holdings has been a long-time supporter of CMSC, answering the call in 2008 for larger supporters so that CMSC could grow purposefully and further our mission of inspiring great Connecticut downtowns. Visit their website at

The State Historic Preservation Office (a division of the Department of Economic & Community Development) supports Connecticut Main Street Center’s work and mission, specifically our efforts to enable economic development through adaptive reuse and rehabilitation of the historic buildings located throughout our downtowns and Main Streets. Click here to visit their website.