Street Talk

New Manager Named For Main Street Program

By Susan Hart

WVMSA has received the first of the Charrette Planning products. The Zip Code Survey that was conducted the week before the Charrette has been returned with not so surprising results. For the seven day survey, merchants were asked to record home zip codes of the customers who patronized their stores. According to the completed survey, the Primary Trade Area for Water Valley are those customers with the 38965 (Water Valley), zip code. The Secondary Trade Area includes Zip Codes of 38922 (Coffeeville), and 38948 (Oakland). However, it may be a surprise to some that a significant number of Valley patrons are from Oxford and Batesville.

This Zip Code Survey provides information to help develop a market assessment for Water Valley that can determine what types of new retailers might complement existing offerings in town, or how existing businesses might expand to better serve the needs of an area. The Market Analysis portion of the Charrette addressed these points in the preliminary report and will have more specific information once the process is completed.

The Zip Code Survey was targeted at retail shopping in the Main Street district. Participating businesses include Magnolia Home Furnishings, Sprint Mart, Valley Lumber, Sartain Home and Auto, Mid Town Auto Parts, Turnage Drug Store, Velvet Glove, Carolyn’s Flowers and Gifts, Med-Mart, Village Flower Shoppe, Williams Flowers and Gifts, Factory Connection, Larson’s Piggly Wiggly, Dunn’s Family Steakhouse, Napa Auto Parts, and White Star Kitchen and Tavern. Those businesses have received a report of their own customer base composition as it compares to Water Valley as a whole. This information can be valuable when looking for ways to expand customer base, moving to another location, or keys to explore untapped markets. Thank you to the businesses who participated in the survey.

I am sorry to announce that this installment of Street Talk is my last as director for WVMSA. However, I am pleased to announce that Mickey Howley will continue the column and position as the new director. WVMSA has been a proactive community initiative in Water Valley for about 2 years now. In that time, the organization has worked to preserve and revitalize our Main Street district. The commitment by Water Vallians has attracted the attention of the Mississippi Main Street Association, the Mississippi Development Authority, and the Appalachian Regional Commission (to name a few). These organizations promote growth and sustainability statewide, and see Water Valley as a little town making big progress.

The economic downturn that many cities across America are facing can be softened for Water Valley. When townspeople focus on shopping locally for goods and services, not only are jobs saved, but a community is strengthened and maintained for the its future.

*The tabulations show the following:

Zip Code    Zip Code Name    Total Visits    Visits per 1000 population

38965         Water Valley         2786              316.7

38922         Coffeeville            149                43.39

38948         Oakland                57                 24.87

38915         Bruce                    41                 10.03

38620         Courtland              25                   6.52

38655         Oxford                  192                  6.39

38606         Batesville              91                    5.99

38921         Charleston             23                    4.38

*zip code survey tabulated by Mississippi Main Street Association for WVMSA Charrette Planning Program, January 12-14, 2009.

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