In 2013, McComb lost its anchor retail store, leaving 16 buildings vacant downtown. At the same time, expansion of an intermodal rail terminal nearby puts McComb at a potential pivot point. With a grant from the local community foundation, townspeople decided to draft a new future and create McComb Region Heart & Soul.
Writing a New Chapter in McComb
With a grant from the local community foundation, the McComb Region Heart & Soul project (area population 4,000) got started in 2015. Within a few months of starting Community Heart & Soul®, small changes happened. Lawns looked neater. Businesses were sprucing up. In the summer of 2016, McComb celebrated eight ribbon cuttings.
McComb is an example of the “positive disruptive” effect Heart & Soul can have in a town. As pride is renewed, small changes pave the way for bigger changes and challenges, such as envisioning what role the community will play with the expansion of an intermodal rail terminal in the village of Hoytville, which is included in the Heart & Soul project.
Renewed Pride Opens Door to opportunity — Project goals include:
– Revitalizing and building the community based on local values by connecting to and giving voice to all members of the community.
– Gaining a clear definition of what community means to people living within the McComb School District boundaries.
– Deciding what happens to the community in the future.