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BDC has potential for Follansbee

We would encourage the city of Follansbee to do what it can afford to join the supporters of the Business Development Corp. of the Northern Panhandle.

With the BDC’s recently completed purchase of the former Follansbee Steel site, Follansbee can look toward a future with re-use of the site.

BDC has a fine example of what could be expected a few miles to the south, where the former Wheeling Corrugating Beech Bottom plant now has several businesses, employing dozens of people in an industrial park setting. Or it could be something more extensive. Time and investment will tell, but success surely will come.

Follansbee Steel will require environmental cleanup, and the BDC has funds available. It has a track record of success in obtaining funding for, and completing, environmental assessments and cleanups.

It is true that Follansbee has enjoyed some success on its own, redeveloping sites that now house a Rite Aid store and the big Sheetz gas station. The old steel mill that dominated the city for a century is a larger site and could be redeveloped quicker by being watched over by a dedicated economic development entity. Follansbee will benefit from BDC’s ownership of the site, and turnabout, by monetary support for BDCs operations, would seem fair.

Follansbee’s annual support for the BDC would total about $4,000.

We hope the city considers the potential benefits and recognizes the support as an investment in the future as well as assisting a proven economic development group to continue its work.

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