Giles County leaders looking to attract more business

GILES COUNTY, Va. – Due to a state grant, Giles County is about to become more attractive to businesses.

People who work in the area are looking forward to the potential changes.

Beth Vanderpool has been serving sweet treats like banana splits at her shop, Scoops, since 2019.

“I figured, ice cream, arcade, there’s nothing really to do for the kids in Giles County,” Vanderpool said.

While Vanderpool has seen her business grow, she’s also seen growth in the county.

“After we opened there was another restaurant that opened across the street called Blue Grass Barbecue, there are several businesses across the street that have opened up,” Vanderpool said.

For Vanderpool, seeing more businesses come to Giles County is a good thing.

“It would be awesome to find other businesses coming into the county, Giles is growing,” Vanderpool said.

Giles County leaders said the state invested about $400,000 in the Virginia Business Ready Site Program to develop Wheatland Eco Park, a 130-acre industrial park.

“We are thrilled about the opportunity and investment the state is making,” Giles County Administrator Chris McKlarney said.

They say the money will be used to build a 200,000-square-foot shell building.

“Business moves so fast now that a company doesn’t have time for a site to be built out and construction of a facility most companies want to move into an existing building,” McKlarney said. “In order for us to be competitive for us to compete with the rest of the state and country, we need to have sites and buildings ready to go.”

Economic leaders in the New River Valley say having a building ready at the Wheatland Eco Park is needed because there aren’t many industrial sites — except for two, one in Montgomery and the other in Pulaski County.

“This is very impactful for the New River Valley,” Katie Boswell, Executive Director of Onward NRV, said.

They want to keep the momentum going since 2018. They say companies have invested over $500,000,000 and created nearly 2,500 jobs in the NRV.

“We’ve had 23 companies announced either moving to the region, or expanding the region,” Boswell said.

Recommended Videos