Our Vision is a community where we all work in concert to make Oil City a desirable place to work, live and visit.  A Main Street community that has:

  • A clean, safe main street with restored historic architecture and attractive streetscapes;
  • Scenic waterways, walking and bike trails that will provide river access and opportunities for recreation;
  • A vibrant artist community that supports art and culture in a visitor-friendly venue;
  • Downtown niche businesses that offer unique and enjoyable retail, restaurant and accommodation experiences;
  • Professional services that support the wellbeing and vitality of our citizens and local economy;
  • Quaint and affordable residential apartments and town homes in the upper stories of downtown buildings;
  • Connection to the emerging technology that will enhance opportunities and allow our businesses to be responsive to changing markets and customer needs; and
  • Academic and research programs provided by Clarion University-Venango, the Venango Technology Center, the Oil City School District, and private parochial schools that will augment the skill sets and knowledge needed to grow our local economy and connect us to world markets.

The ambiance of our downtown will shine, known for its dynamic businesses that connect a rich history, vibrant arts and culture, emerging technology and human assets in our own unique way.


Main Street is a volunteer-driven downtown revitalization program that was developed in 1980 by the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Main Street Center. The Main Street Four Point Approach ® is a comprehensive strategy that has revitalized and transformed downtown business districts throughout the United States.

The Oil City Main Street Program launched in fall 2011, with the formal Main Street District designation of the downtown comprised of C-2 zoned areas, following several years of planning by dedicated volunteers and community partners. Today, the Oil City Main Street Program is actively implementing many strategies and initiatives to improve the look and vibrancy of downtown Oil City.

The following committees are vital to the succes of the Oil City Main Street Program:

Design Committee: The Design Committee’s focus is to improve the look and feel of our downtown with attractive storefronts, displays, signage and aesthetic features.  Projects include:  Facade Improvement Grant Program, "Best Dressed Windows" Initiative, Downtown Mural Program, Christmas Decor upgrades, the Center Street Bridge Illumination (more detail below), and more.

Promotions Committee: The Promotions Committee works to market and promote our downtown with advertising, events, and activities.  Projects include:  Cash Mobs, Small Business Saturday, Jingle Bell Run 5K, "Oil City Uncorked" Wine Walks, Oil City Farmers' Market, Music on the Square, and others.  

Economic Vitality Committee: The Economic Vitality Committee concentrates on keeping and attracting businesses and finding new uses for underutilized property.  Projects include:  "Get Down To Business" Workshop series, Business Resource Guide, maintaining building & business inventories, business ower surveys.

Safe, Clean & Green Committee: The Safe, Clean & Green Committee works to keep our downtown safe, clean & green.  Projects include:  Adopt-A-Block Program & Oil City Cleanup Day, Sidewalk Planters & Hanging Baskets, and others.

Organization Committee: The Organization Committee works to shape the Main Street Program by building volunteers, partnerships, and resources in the community.  Projects include:  Main Street website, annual meeting, fundraising events, governance & bylaws, Community Perceptions Survey.

All meetings occur monthly, and are open to the public. We especially encourage participation from the downtown business community. You can find more information about the committees and see the full meeting schedule here.


ARTS Oil City:  The Oil City Main Street Program now facilitates ARTS Oil City, an economic development initiative originally spearheaded by the City of Oil City in 2006 that has turned Oil City into a growing artist community.

Collaborations:  The Oil City Main Street Program has also collaborated with other groups to create Oil City's Town Square, designate Oil City as an official Trail Town, support the new Multimodal Transportation Facility, and more.



Downtown Oil City is a diverse community filled with people from all ages and backgrounds. It’s our goal to make everyone feel welcomed, and to offer those that call Oil City home, as well as those that visit, a positive and rich downtown experience.

With over 10,375 residents, we are certainly a small town with a big personality. The median age is 39, and young people are looking for ways to get involved and make a difference here. We proudly host numerous young professioanls and business owners with young energy and fresh ideas.

Oil City, PA 5 - Minute Drive 15 - Minute Drive 30 - Minute Drive;
Population 9,200 21,133 54,954
Avg. HH Income $38,984 $43,316 $46,187
Avg. Age 39.9 41.1 41.5
Median Home Values $56,297 $68,886 $77,872

Source:  Claritas/Nielson for Pennsylvania Downtown Center, 2012

See the Oil City Demographics Summary here.

Downtown Oil City’s business roster includes over 14 restaurants, cafes & taverns, 22 shops & galleries, and a solid variety of over 80 professional, personal and community services.


Public Transportation:  Public transportation is available on the VenanGo Bus.  With rates of only $1.50 for adults, $.75 for children ages 6 – 11 and free opportunities for those under age 5 or over age 65, it’s easy to hop on and get around!

Click here for more information about VenanGo Bus. 




Downtown Oil City has a full-time police department patrolling the downtown day and night.  The police are very proactive in helping businesses secure their space as well as working with residents and visitors alike. Our downtown also is served by two full-time fire stations--one on the North Side at Plummer Street and one on the South Side at Central Avenue.

Here are numbers you should know:

Emergencies    Dial 911
Police              (814) 678-3080
Fire                 (814) 678-3061

To keep our downtown safe for all please report any crime or suspicious behavior to authorities.


Downtown Oil City is within 2 hours of Erie and Pittsburgh and within 3 hours of Cleveland and State College. With access to I-80 within 25 minutes, businesses and those that travel find it easy to access the highway system and travel with ease.

Find directions to Oil City here

Oil Region Alliance - Downtown Oil City Pennsylvania City of Oil City - Downtown Oil City Pennsylvania Elizabeth S. Black, PNC Trustee and Edith S. Black, PNC Trustee Pennsylvania Downtown - Downtown Oil City Pennsylvania

Terms of Use
This website is intended to share information about the Oil City Main Street Program and the Oil City Main Street District. Businesses listed are only those within the Main Street designated area of downtown. Many other businesses exist beyond the Main Street District in downtown Oil City. Users agree not to use this website or its services to post, use or transmit content that you do not have the right to post or use, for example, using photos without the consent of the photographer, copying content or information within the website or using any of the images or content in an inappropriate way such as spamming businesses or individuals listed within the website. See the complete Terms and Photo Credits here.