For Immediate Release – December 8th, 2023

As a result of partnership between the City of Mount Airy and Surry County Economic Development Partnership, $1,500,000 was awarded for the development of a cleared and graded pad at Westwood Industrial Park.

In August of 2023, SCEDP staff presented development options and opportunities for the City of Mount Airy, with an accompanying recommendation that if local officials would like to see development at Westwood Industrial Park, that action was needed. The Mount Airy Board of Commissioners approved for city and SCEDP staff to proceed with an application for SITE funding from the Golden Leaf Foundation.

The SITE Program offers resources to help communities identify potential sites for economic development, provides funding to complete due diligence on publicly controlled sites, and provides funding to extend public utilities to publicly controlled sites or to conduct clearing and rough grading of publicly owned sites. The three phases of the SITE Program are Identification, Due Diligence, and Development.

The City had been a previous awardee from the GLF for the conducting of due diligence studies at the site: Phase 1 Environmental, Geotechnical Analysis, Wetlands Delineation, as well as a Historic and Endangered Species Study. These materials are the baseline necessities to know if a property can feasibly become an site for investment by a corporation. Industrial projects will typically not consider sites that do not have accompanying due diligence documents. City and SCEDP staff submitted numerous documents and information on the site.

At their December 7th meeting, the Golden LEAF Foundation Board of Directors awarded $3.08 million in funding for five projects through the Golden LEAF SITE Program in Burke, Greene, Madison, Surry, and Washington counties.

The SITE Program – Identification phase provides assistance to a community from a firm contracted by Golden LEAF to help identify potential industrial sites in the community. Greene County and Washington County were selected to receive assistance through this phase.

In the SITE Program – Due Diligence phase, the Golden LEAF Board awarded $50,000 in funding to Burke Partnership for Economic Development, Inc. for the Great Meadows Site to complete a geotechnical report.

For the SITE Program – Development, the Golden LEAF Board awarded $3,000,000 in funding for two site preparation projects including, clearing and rough grading, to benefit sites that have completed the due diligence necessary to demonstrate that the site is suitable for development. Organizations receiving SITE Program – Development support include:

  • $1,500,000 to Madison County Economic Development for site preparation activities including clearing/grubbing, earthwork, and erosion control at the Madison County Industrial Site to attract businesses expected to create 140 jobs with annual wages at or above $44,200.
  • $1,500,000 to the City of Mount Airy for clearing, grading, and other site preparation of 16 acres at the Westwood Industrial Park that is expected to create 200 new jobs with average wages of $45,000 and $75 million in private investment.

This 16 acre pad is inside of a larger 98 acre parcel owned by the City of Mount Airy, this pad is intended to be the first of multiple sites within this parcel. The development of a sizable pad-ready site in the City will offer immense opportunity to be competitive for new investment from existing industry expansions or the attraction of outside companies seeking additional locations in the North Carolina. The City of Mount Airy has committed to accompanying funding of $400,000 to fully implement the project.

Questions may be directed to Blake Moyer, President and CEO of the SCEDP (blake@surryedp.com) or Darren Lewis, City of Mount Airy Interim City Manager (dlewis@mountairy.org).