Project Name: Buffalo Mill Site Improvements

Grantee: Union County

Total Project Cost: $602,926

ARC Funds: $422,048 (70% of the total project cost)

Local Funds: $180,878 Provided by Union County

Beneficiaries: The Buffalo Community and Union County

Project Description: See below


The Appalachian Regional Commission announced today approval of a grant in the amount of $422,048 to Union County for Buffalo Mill Site Improvement project.

The historic Buffalo Mill closed in 1995 and led to many years of declining employment in the area. An important component of Union County’s future planning is to upgrade local amenities with an eye toward attracting new businesses. The Buffalo Mill Village Community Park had fallen into disrepair and ARC funding will be used to restore the park’s stream, stabilize the channel to reduce sediment, remove pond sediment, reconstruct a walking path and foot bridge and add park amenities.

The park upgrades are part of Union County’s plans to attract private investment to the currently vacant mill site. Currently, one new manufacturing facility is planning to locate in Union County within the same census tract as the Buffalo Mill site and has committed to creating 60 new jobs. The park will be used to host mobile job fairs and a farmers’ market and function as a catalyst for economic development in the area, help reinstate pride in the community and create a gathering place for community events.

Union County is also collaborating with a private developer to make preliminary plans for the future development of the Mill site. The County is working with Catawba Regional Development Corporation, which has applied for a Brownfields Assessment Grant and identified the Buffalo Mill site as a priority site for funding.

In addition to ARC funds, local sources will provide $180,878, bringing the total project funding to $602,926.

About the Appalachian Regional Commission:

The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) is an economic development agency of the federal government and 13 state governments focusing on 423 counties across the Appalachian region.  ARC’s mission is to innovate, partner, and invest in building community capacity and strengthening economic growth in Appalachia, and helping the region achieve socioeconomic clarity with the nation.  More information is available at