Bladenboro gets 900K federal grant to revitalize downtown business district

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Flood water line on a wall inside of a Bladenboro business in October 2016. (Photo: WWAY)

BLADEN COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) has awarded $900,000 grant to support the economic revitalization of the downtown Bladenboro business district.

Bladenboro suffered major damage during hurricanes Matthew and Florence.

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The grant was given to Bladen’s Bloomin’ Agri-Industrial, Inc. and will be matched with $600,000 in local investment. It’s expected to create 44 jobs.

“The Economic Development Administration is pleased to support Elizabethtown as they advance their plans to diversify and grow the region’s economy,” Dennis Alvord, Acting Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development, said. “This EDA investment will build a small business center that will house retail and other businesses and help revitalize an area economically impacted by multiple hurricanes and the coronavirus pandemic.”

“Our Eastern North Carolina communities have shown resilience through hurricanes and a global pandemic, and they’re ready to move forward,” Gov. Roy Cooper said. “This investment will help Bladen County’s workforce and economy continue to grow and thrive.”

“This announcement is a big win for Elizabethtown and surrounding areas,” Senator Thom Tillis said. “This grant will go to Bladen’s Bloomin’ Agri-Industrial, Inc. to help grow economic opportunities and revitalize the Bladenboro downtown business district, which desperately needs assistance after being impacted by Hurricane Florence and Hurricane Matthew. I applaud the Department of Commerce for their continued investment in North Carolina to further attract future economic development projects, investment, and job growth for future generations.”

The new business center will serve as the town’s commercial center, replacing facilities demolished following the devastation of hurricanes Matthew and Florence.