Opportunity Appalachia 2022 – 2024
Opportunity Appalachia brings new investment to Central Appalachian Communities, creating new jobs and businesses that support sustainable growth.
We work with over 50 projects seeking to raise over $420 million in financing for projects that support economic restructuring and diversification in underinvested communities. Our investment priorities include: downtown development, manufacturing, IT, healthcare, education, food systems, clean energy, and heritage tourism and recreation — primarily in rural communities.
Our portfolio of high impact projects provides both robust social return and as well as an attractive financial return.
For example, our 2022 Portfolio is anticipated to create 3,000 jobs – including jobs for individuals in addiction recovery, the long-term unemployed (such as former coal industry workers), and minorities and women. Increased investment in minority / women – Owned Business Enterprises, including minority developers and TA providers, is also a program priority.
Opportunity Appalachia engages a diverse range of investors that prioritize high impact projects in underinvested areas, including: Qualified Opportunity Zone Funds, New Markets Tax Credit CDEs, Historic Tax Credit investors, banks, CDFIs, angel investors, crowd funding platforms, and public funders. And we welcome increased investor participation!!
Financial supporters of our program include the Appalachian Regional Commission, US Treasury CDFI Fund, Truist, Goldman Sachs, US Bank, and Dogwood Health Trust.
Opportunity Appalachia has been nationally recognized as a Forbes OZ Catalyst.
HOW WE WORK
In 2021, Opportunity Appalachia selected 17 development projects in a three-state region for program participation, seeking to raise over $250 million in financing. In 2022-2024, Opportunity Appalachia selected 33 development projects looking to raise $252 million in financing for downtown and rural redevelopment projects. These projects are selected through a robust outreach process that includes engagement with state and local economic development agencies, non-profit community-based organizations, private business owners and developers, CDFIs, banks, investment partners, and educational institutions. Outreach materials and priority communities are listed here and our program partners can be found here. Our target geography includes Appalachian communities in NC, OH, TN, VA, and WV, per the map below.
For participating projects, a range of technical assistance is provided, including:
- development of investment prospectus, preparation of pro forma financial projections, structuring of project financing,
- market research, demand assessment,
- architectural and engineering,
- business plan preparation, operations planning,
- identification of project developers
- investor outreach
Our program does not hire staff to provide these services, but instead contracts with both in-region and national organizations for these services. More information appears here. Technical support averages $25,000 – $75,000 per project.
Once investment prospectus are completed, Opportunity Appalachia and our Technical Assistance providers help local projects to outreach to investors, which include Qualified Opportunity Zone Funds, New Markets Tax Credit CDEs, Historic Tax Credit investors, banks, CDFIs, angel investors, crowd funding platforms, and public funders. Outreach activities will include the hosting of a highly visible regional investment event (Investor Convening) – to highlight our portfolio of high impact projects in Central Appalachia that provide both robust social and sufficient financial return.
Central Appalachia – North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia
PROVISION OF TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE (2022)
The types of technical support to be provided by the Opportunity Appalachia program include:
- development of investment prospectus, preparation of pro forma financial projections, structuring of project financing,
- market research, demand assessment
- architectural and engineering
- business plan preparation, operations planning
- identification of project developers
- investor outreach
- other types of assistance
This support will be provided on contract by experienced business and development partners. It is anticipated that support of $30,000 – $75,000 will be provided for each applicant, averaging $50,000 per applicant.
Entities interested in providing Technical Assistance must complete the Request for Qualifications RFQ, below.
Request for Qualifications RFQ (PDF) – CLICK HERE
PROGRAM MANAGER & STEERING COMMITTEE
The Opportunity Appalachia program Steering Committee is comprised of the following regional and national organizations:
- Appalachian Community Capital(ACC), a 27-member CDFI intermediary whose members and their affiliates manage over $1 billion in assets supporting economic development in Appalachia. ACC is supported by Rural Support Partners, as Opportunity Appalachia’s program manager.
Lead State Partners – lead community development state partners:
- Mountain BizWorks (NC)– A leading CDFI in Western NC building a vibrant and inclusive entrepreneurial community by helping businesses start, grow, and thrive, engaging community leaders across a 24-county region.
- OhioSE– The lead regional economic development organization in Eastern and Southern Ohio working in a 25 county area, supported by Jobs Ohio.
- University of Tennessee Knoxville– Office of Outreach and Economic Development, manages statewide programs, provides seed investments, and supports public-private partnerships with community development leaders.
- Opportunity Southwest Virginia / UVA – Wise– Pilots the way for 19 counties and scores of communities in Southwest Virginia to support economic and community development efforts to create thriving entrepreneurial communities that accelerate progress for both new and established ventures.
- West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center– Works across 33 counties and is the lead partner in the WV Downtown Appalachia Redevelopment Initiative which seeks to revitalize small WV communities through provision of technical support and project financing.
National Technical Assistance Providers
- Main Street America– With a network of more than 1,600 neighborhoods and communities, MSA works to successfully transform communities and revitalize local economies.
- Coastal Enterprises Inc– This leading national rural CDFI has deployed over $1.3 billion in financings directly and through its New Markets Tax Credit CDE affiliate.
State collaborators and planning partners informing activities in each state include:
North Carolina: North Carolina Department of Commerce, Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina, Dogwood Health Trust, Land of Sky Regional Council, Southwestern Commission, High Country Commission, Foothills Regional Commission, Western Piedmont Council of Governments, Eagle Market Streets Development Corporation, Western Carolina University, Mountain West Partnership
Ohio: OhioSE, JobsOhio, Appalachian Partnership Inc, Governor’s Office of Appalachia, Ohio Development Services Agency, Ohio University Voinovich School of Leadership & Public Affairs, Buckeye Hills Regional Council, Ohio Valley Regional Development Commission (OVRDC), Ohio Mid-Eastern Governments Association (OMEGA) and Eastgate Regional Council of Governments.
Tennessee: University of Tennessee, Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development, First TN Development District, Southeast TN Development District, Upper Cumberland Development District, East TN Development District, South Central Development District, Knoxville Entrepreneur Center, Sync Space, Biz Foundry, Pathway Lending, BrightBridge Capital, Three Roots Capital.
Virginia: UVA Wise/Opportunity SWVA, LOCUS, VA Department of Housing and Community Development, Virginia Tourism Corporation, LENOWISCO Planning District Commission, Cumberland Plateau Planning District Commission, Mount Rogers Planning District Commission, Thompson Charitable Foundation, People Inc, Virginia Coalfields Economic Development Authority and Virginia Community Capital.
West Virginia: Brownfields Assistance Center at WVU, Partner Community Capital, and WV Community Development Hub. Additional partners to be announced.
INVESTOR CONVENING / CAPITAL RAISE
Opportunity Appalachia investor outreach will occur through both an Investor Convening event, and through outreach and support from the Steering Committee and Technical Assistance providers.
A highly visible Investor Convening was held to highlight participating communities and related investable transactions, May 31 – June 1, conference website CLICK HERE.
Pre-vetted National Impact investors, NMTC CDEs, banks, CDFIs, and Qualified Opportunity Funds (QOFs) were invited to attend, a curated web-based platform hosting prospectus / pitch decks was made available to assist investors pre-event, and project pitches from participating investment-ready communities was presented.
TA providers and the Steering Committee will also leverage their local and national relationships to introduce promising transactions to vetted and interested investors. These outreach and placement efforts involve support for introductory meetings and if possible, site visits.
Information on the 2023 Opportunity Appalachia Investor Convening, May 31 – June 1, is available CLICK HERE.
2022-24 PROJECT PORTFOLIO
Opportunity Appalachia 2022-24 Project Portfolio:
The following projects have been selected for participation in the 2022-2024 Opportunity Appalachia program. To review detailed portfolio summaries, click here. To search projects by interest and location, as well as view available prospectuses and other information, click here.
▪ Blue Note Junction LLC, Blue Note Junction Community Health and Business Incubator, Asheville, NC – Construction of co-working and business incubator space for minority owned and led businesses, the facility will serve as an economic engine and health catalyst for the community. The project will include retail space for local goods, a commercial kitchen, fresh produce sales, house a social enterprise supporting reinvestment in local minority owned businesses, a performance space/ theater, and a business incubator providing development services. Estimated costs total $4.5 MM and create at least 40 jobs paying living wages or higher.
▪ Eagle Market Streets Development Corporation, Catawba Vale Community Center, Old Fort, NC – Development of a 60,000 sq. ft. two-story warehouse into a community-owned asset that provides space for an employee-owned apparel manufacturer as an anchor tenant, as well as local restaurants, locally-owned retail, a Montessori school, and community space for entrepreneurs and local community organizations. The minority-led project sponsor estimates total costs to be $5.1 MM with anticipated creation or retention of 75-100 above living wage jobs.
▪ Watauga Meats and Butchery, LLC, High Country Value-Added Facility, Zionville, NC – Development of a 6,000 sq. ft. building into a meat processing facility producing high-quality smoked and cooked meat products, including sausage, charcuterie and other items. This project is the second phase of a community-led effort to improve food security in Northwest North Carolina and expand regional processing capacity for farmers. The locally-owned Ellison Farms will also operate a community market in the front of the butchery, creating further markets for local producers to sell their products. Estimated costs total $1.3 MM with anticipated job creation of 8-10 jobs.
▪ Camp Grier, Grier Lodging Project, Old Fort, NC – Creation of a roughly 75,000 sq. ft. outdoor recreation hub that will be used to support an equitable outdoor recreation economy in Old Fort, NC. The Hub will contain light commercial space, camping and van spaces, long-term rental housing, short-term rental lodging, and provide direct access to a 100+ mile trail complex within walking and riding distance of downtown Old Fort. Estimated costs total $20 MM with anticipated creation of 30 jobs.
▪ City of Shelby, The Hotel Charles, Shelby, NC – Restoration and redevelopment of the historic 32,000 sq. ft. Hotel Charles in Shelby, NC into an upscale-boutique hotel, with approximately 36 rooms. Once completed, the three-story hotel will offer guests walkability to Uptown restaurants, local tourist attractions, event venues, and walking trails. An anticipated 25-30 new jobs will be created, and the approximate hospitality tax for year 1 of operation is approximately $86,000. Estimated costs total $7-8 MM.
▪ Clay County Rural Development Authority, Lake Chatuge Boutique Hotel, Hayesville, NC – Development of a new 65 room boutique hotel in Hayesville, NC would be the only hotel in Clay County. In addition to the 65 guest rooms, the three-story hotel on the shores of Lake Chatuge would include a full-service restaurant, flexible indoor meeting space, an outdoor pool, health/recreation facility, and lake access. Estimated costs total $20 MM with approximately 85 much needed quality jobs in this county.
▪ New Jackson, LLC, Sylva Stay, Sylva, NC – Restoration of an 8,000 sq. ft. hotel built in 1925 in downtown Sylva, NC. The restoration will include opportunities for mixed-use, façade improvements, and the re-creation of the original roof monitor providing an amenity for hotel guests and a unique feature to Sylva’s downtown. Estimated costs total $1 MM with anticipated job creation of 10 construction jobs and 10 permanent positions.
▪ Nikwasi Initiative, Noquisiyi Cherokee Cultural Learning Center, Franklin, NC – Development of a 7,048 sq. ft. former auto sales building into a cultural learning center adjacent to the Noquisiyi Mound, the largest unexcavated Native American platform mound in the Southeast. The mound will be landscaped with native food plants that the ancestors of today’s Cherokee would have grown or foraged and it will present awareness of the Cherokee connection to nature. Estimated costs total $3.75 MM with anticipated job creation of 10 construction jobs and 14 permanent positions.
▪ Town of Franklin, Scott-Griffin Hotel and Rooftop Restaurant, Franklin, NC – Restoration of the four-story 16,500 sq. ft. former Scott-Griffin Hotel in downtown Franklin. The addition of a rooftop restaurant will offer a 360-degree view of the Nantahala and Cowee mountain ranges. The building currently has retail operations on the first floor, with the upper three floors vacant for more than 50 years. Estimated costs total $5-7 MM with anticipated creation of 30 jobs.
▪ Black Diamond Development Company, LLC, Shawnee Renaissance, Shawnee, OH – Redevelopment of six existing downtown buildings for a total of 20,000 sq. ft. including the 120-year-old Shawnee Jail. One building will house the Black Diamond Brewery with vacation rentals located on the second floor. Additional buildings will house the Black Diamond Regional Visitors Bureau with a planned winery. The Jail and the upstairs of all buildings will be converted to housing, residential or vacation rentals. Estimated costs total $2 MM with anticipated job creation of approximately 95 jobs.
▪ Bodimer Real Estate, LLC, Inn on the Park, Gallipolis, OH – Revitalization of 2-5 buildings with a total of 60,000 sq. ft. into a Boutique Hotel. The space would also maintain retail spaces that could support the hotel such as restaurants, bars, spa, and pool. This boutique hotel will overlook the historic Gallipolis City Park and the surrounding park square. Estimated costs total $15 MM with anticipated job creation of approximately 75 jobs.
▪ Jefferson County Port Authority, Exchange Realty Building Redevelopment, Steubenville, OH – Renovate the 47,000 sq. ft. Exchange Realty Building in the Commercial Historic Business District into market rate housing or mixed-use office and housing. The preliminary construction vision is 15-20 loft apartments with ground level restaurants, coffee shops, retail and office space. Estimated costs total $10 M with anticipated job creation of approximately 20-25 jobs.
▪ Noble County Community Improvement Corporation, The Mills Building, Caldwell, OH – The Mills Building in downtown Caldwell is a 4545 sq. ft. building of prime architectural significance and key to the economic and cultural health of Caldwell, but is in a state of disrepair. Redevelopment concepts include mixed use on lower floors including retail, food, office space and living spaces, creative use of the courtyard for outdoor events, and use of the third floor space for a community event venue. With the shortage of housing, the project hopes to demonstrate that housing on second and third floor spaces will be in demand in the community. Estimated cost of the project is $1 M with the creation of 10 jobs.
▪ Maxwell’s Hospitality Group, Maxwell’s Pizza Somerset, Somerset, OH – Renovation of a 5,300 sq. ft. building located in the mixed-use Somerset Historic District. The project will create a successful restaurant in the ground floor space, three renovated apartments on the second floor, renovated street frontage and new outdoor dining space in the rear of the property. Estimated cost of the project is $1 M and total estimated job creation is approximately 60 jobs.
▪ Swisher Partners, LLC, Swisher Development Complex, Somerset, OH – Renovation of three historic structures adjacent to Hotel Swisher, which will serve as part of a lodging and entertainment complex. The total space renovated is 10,500 sq. ft. and will incorporate the historic Jacob Miller’s Tavern, an 1807 log tavern built on the original Zane’s Trace. The project will build out five lodging units, a retail spirits shop and tasting room, distillery, and cider house. The women-led project sponsor estimates the cost of the project at $2.5 M and total job creation at approximately 65 construction jobs and 10-15 permanent jobs.
▪ Switchback Properties, RowHammer Brewing Company, Chauncey, OH – Restoration and conversion of the former 7,546 sq. ft. Chauncey School Gymnasium into a brewery, restaurant and event space. When completed, the restaurant will accommodate 100 people and private event space will include catering and a stage for live entertainment. Renovations will ensure the historical integrity of the building and preserve original wooden gym floors, stage, windows, facade, and brick access road. The woman-led project sponsor estimates the project cost to be $550,000-800,000 and total job creation to be 10-12 construction jobs and 36-41 permanent positions.
▪ Village of Byesville, The Byesville Business Incubator, Byesville, OH – Redevelopment of a soon-to-be vacant 11,068 sq. ft. elementary school into a dynamic business incubator to complement growth in the downtown business district. Envisioned in the building are retail, professional, and light manufacturing spaces where visitors can experience Byesville’s entrepreneurial culture. The estimated cost of the project is approximately $500,000 and total estimated job creation is about 20 permanent jobs.
▪ City of Youngstown, OH, City of Youngstown Parking Garage Financial Feasibility Study, Youngstown, OH – The Financial Feasibility Study will identify the details for a properly sized, economically viable, and financially sustainable parking structure that serves the needs of multiple underperforming downtown buildings. Located between the Youngstown State University campus and downtown Youngstown, the study addresses the plan to connect the downtown and YSU campus through a well-lit, maintained, welcoming and centralized parking option for users of downtown and the campus in order to avoid demolition for surface parking. Estimated costs total $11 MM.
▪ City of Zanesville, Pioneer School Redevelopment Project, Zanesville, OH – The formerly abandoned Pioneer School, which had been redeveloped into an art studio with loft apartments, will be further renovated to build out 20 new apartments overlooking downtown Zanesville. The City has identified housing as a critical need to be filled in Zanesville. Estimated costs for the project total $1.5 M and creation of 20 jobs.
▪ Cherokee Farm Development Corporation, Spark Innovation Center, Knoxville, TN – The Spark Innovation Center on the UT Research Park will serve the region’s most promising technology-based startups by providing affordable access to specialized laboratory space, office space, and open areas to help ensure collaboration. Included will be seven fully equipped wet labs and about 15 office spaces with accompanying meeting, collaboration, and common spaces. Estimated costs total $9-11 MM.
▪ Ashland Holdings, LLC, Ashland Holdings and DeBord Enterprises Projects, Morristown, TN – Two complimentary projects with five buildings totaling 38,000 sq. ft. aim to restore and revitalize historic downtown Morristown, TN. Plans include mixed use development with 18 residential units and up to 60 hospitality and retail jobs from tenants including an ice cream shop and a music venue. Estimated costs combined for both projects total $8 MM.
▪ Real Good Kitchen, PBC, Real Good Kitchen Food Entrepreneurship Hub, Knoxville, TN – The Food Entrepreneurship Hub will expand to 7,200 sq. ft. and upgrade Real Good Kitchen’s current space to include a new storefront and micro-food hall. The space will also undergo a number of green building improvements including stormwater retention and solar panels. Estimated costs total $2 MM with anticipated creation of 150 jobs and serve 250 businesses over five years.
▪ Sequatchie County, Zipper Factory, Dunlap, TN* – Redevelopment of an historic 64,820 sq. ft. former zipper manufacturing facility into a range of mixed-use downtown amenities and services. The development follows a number of infrastructure investments including sidewalks, public parks, music and farmers market pavilions and public restrooms, which connect the Zipper Factory property to downtown commercial development. Estimated costs total $19.3 M with anticipated job creation of 40 jobs. (*Pending approval)
▪ Zephyr Development Group, Roane Custom Beef and Pork, Oak Ridge, TN – New construction of a 5,600 sq. ft. custom beef and hog processing plant in Roane County, TN to bring healthy locally-grown meat to area families addressing food supply-chain challenges. This locally-owned / veteran-owned facility will receive livestock from about 100 local farmers, butcher and package the meat, then freeze it for customer pickup, and will include production of sausage, curing, smoking, as well as space for local farm products such as eggs, jams, honeys, etc. Estimated costs total $1 MM with anticipated job creation of 11 quality jobs.
▪ City of Madisonville, Kefauver Hotel, Madisonville, TN – Redevelopment of the 14,600+ sq. ft. historic hotel. The redevelopment and reuse of the hotel property is central to attracting visitors to Downtown Madisonville from the nearby outdoor recreation attractions including Tellico Lake, the Cherohala Skyway, and the Cherokee National Forest. Estimated costs total $5.8 MM with anticipated creation of approximately 50 jobs.
▪ Blue Mountain Therapy, Blue Mountain Expansion, Abingdon, VA – This locally-owned regional healthcare facility, which served over 2,700 patients last year, will remodel 42,000 sq. ft. of its 77,000 sq. ft. building to better serve those with physical and or mental disabilities, including clients on the autism spectrum. The remodeled space will include a pool for aquatic therapy, equine assisted therapy riding arena, sensory rooms, provision of life skills and job training, and a commercial kitchen to enable supportive employment in the culinary fields. Estimated total costs are $1 MM and with anticipated job creation of 35 jobs.
▪ Blue Grass Resource Center, Highland Inn Revitalization, Monterey, VA – This 18-room historic Inn built in 1904 will undergo major renovations to return it as an economic engine for the community. The renovated Inn will include fine dining featuring local foods paired with distinctive accommodations for guests. Estimated costs total $3.5 MM with anticipated creation of 20 construction and 18 permanent jobs.
▪ Cliffhanger Ranch Adventure Outpost, Cliffhanger Ranch Adventure Outpost, Coeburn, VA – This project will create an 88-acre outdoor adventure experience in Southwest VA that will include cabins, camping, and horseback riding. The outpost will exude a western guest ranch feel and is located adjacent to and near other state and national parks. Estimated costs total $350,000 with anticipated creation of four jobs upon open and eight more jobs eventually.
▪ Grayson County, VA, Baywood School and Property, Galax, VA – This 24,900 sq. ft. building and adjacent vacant property will be repurposed into affordable housing as well as a community center housing childcare, a wellness center, and/or business space. The adjacent field could become an outdoor recreation area, including a walking track, a multi-use field, and a picnic shelter. Estimated costs total $1.5 MM with creation of 20 jobs.
▪ Lee County Airport Authority, Hangar Construction, Jonesville, VA – Construction of a 9,600 sq. ft. aircraft hangar to support aircraft maintenance, increased visitation, and, eventually, a flight school program. With a growing pilot shortage challenge nationally, a planned flight school would train recent high school grads in an industry with competitive wages above average for the area. Estimated total costs are $480,000 with anticipated permanent job creation at 8-10 and construction jobs at 15.
▪ Mountain Empire Community College (MECC) Foundation, MECC Outdoor Amphitheater, Big Stone Gap, VA – Construction of a 25,000 sq. ft., 1,000-seat amphitheater to support cultural heritage programming in the region. The space will provide permanent infrastructure to meet the demand for event space and improve educational opportunities for students and the community. Estimated total costs are $3 MM and with anticipated permanent job creation of 1 FTE and 3 part-time jobs plus indirect seasonal/event staff labor.
▪ Russell County Industrial Development Authority, Proposed Childcare Facility Evaluation, Lebanon, VA – This 9,824 sq. ft. building will undergo renovations to become a childcare facility, serving an area struggling to meet the childcare demand. Estimated costs are to be determined with anticipated creation of at least 15 childcare jobs.
▪ Town of Wise, Food Truck Incubator Site, Wise, VA – This 13,329 sq. ft. vacant lot near the UVA Wise campus will house infrastructure for Food trucks to park, hookup, and sell their food. The project will also partner with UVA Wise to support business development with the food trucks to plan current and future growth. Estimated total costs are $150,000 and anticipated job creation of roughly 10 jobs.
▪ Whistle Pig Country Store, Whistle Pig Farmers Market and Country Store, Ewing, VA – This women-led development will transform a 5,400 sq. ft. building into a local country general store with deli, coffee shop and farmers’ market. Developed by local residents and farmers, the market will provide the community with fresh food options as well as heritage workshops and a community gathering place in a rural community that is near a veterinary school, a national park with popular hiking trails, and a public elementary and high school. Estimated costs total $1.2 MM with anticipated creation of 20 jobs.
▪ Augusta Heritage Center, The Wilt Building, Elkins, WV – Renovation of a mixed-use 19,520 sq. ft. Contributing Structure in Elkins’ Downtown Historic District. The renovated Wilt will establish downtown classroom and event space, relocate the non-profit August Heritage Center’s offices, and provide artist housing on the upper floors. Estimated costs total $4.6 MM with anticipated job creation of 15-18 jobs.
▪ N.600 Boutique Hotel, Beckley, WV – Renovation of an existing vacant former bank building, N.600 will be the first and only women developed and owned boutique hotel in downtown Beckley, estimated to have between 40 to 60 rooms. Estimated costs total $10 MM with anticipated job creation of approximately 75 jobs.
▪ Downtown PKB, 820 Market Street, Parkersburg, WV – Redevelopment of a 40,000 sq. ft. building in the central business district into a mixed-use facility with retail on the first floor and residential on floors two through five. Sixteen 2-bedroom units are planned on the upper levels as well as at least two businesses at street level. Estimated costs total $8 MM with creation of 8-10 permanent positions and 25 construction jobs.
▪ Fairmont Community Development Partnership, Fairmont Regional Tech Hub, Fairmont, WV – The FRTH is a 40,000 square foot planned mixed-use development that includes a tech workforce training program, entrepreneurship education for students in pre-K through high school, a co-working space, and mixed-income residential units. This public-private partnership estimates total costs of $8 MM with anticipated job creation of 140+ direct and indirect jobs created (including construction) and 16 housing units – seven at 60-80% AMI and nine at market-rate.
▪ New Roots Community Farm, New River Gorge Ag and Culinary Center, Fayette County, WV – Repurpose a 6,000 sq. ft. farmhouse site at the New Roots Community Farm (NRCF) to build out and operate an agricultural and culinary training facility. The center will capitalize on the designation of the nation’s newest national Park, the New River Gorge National Park, and the opportunity of NRCF to grow the local food economy with the expansion of the hospitality sector in adjacent gateway communities. Estimated costs total $1.7 MM with creation of 75 jobs.
▪ Wellsburg Urban Renewal Authority, The Bell Buildings, Wellsburg, WV – Redevelopment of the Bell Buildings, four contiguous buildings with a total of 20,791 sq. ft., into mixed-use development with first-floor retail and upper-floor housing and office space. Estimated costs total $1.1 MM with creation of about 36 jobs.
▪ Wheeling Heritage, Blue Church Redevelopment Initiative, Wheeling, WV – Repurposing the 11,070 sq. ft. Blue Church landmark as a food and beverage concept with live music, or as a 500-person entertainment venue. This project will boost the economic vitality of East Wheeling, one of Wheeling’s most popular residential urban neighborhoods, in a city that has lost nearly ½ its population and in a neighborhood with a poverty rate 3x national average. Estimated costs total $6 MM with creation of 140 jobs, including construction jobs.
More information on related project development is available at:
- Economic Innovation Group Opportunity Zone Activity Map
- New Markets Tax Credit Coalition – Project Summaries
- LISC Community Partners Playbook for Opportunity Zones
- National Trust Community Investment Corporation – Historic Tax Credit development
- Virginia – Locus Impact Investing services
- The Governance Project Toolkit for Maximizing Impact of Opportunity Zones
- HUD Opportunity Zone Toolkit on “Best Practices and Case Studies” for OZs
- The US Impact Investing Alliance (USIIA) Toolkit
- Accelerator for America Investment Prospectus Guide
- Real Estate Investing Basics
- Rural Recovery Playbook, Sorenson Impact
This program is supported by