It is an exciting time for the river city of Huntington, West Virginia. Potential investors can now further West Virginia Governor Jim Justice's vision for a brighter future for the Mountain State by investing in the Huntington, WV Opportunity Zones identified in three census tract areas: Guyandotte, West End Huntington, and Downtown Huntington.
General information on West Virginia Opportunity Zones can be found in the first of this four-part series on the subject. This second piece focuses on Huntington, WV Opportunity Zones.
Features of the Area Surrounding Huntington, WV Opportunity Zones
Huntington is known for its talented workforce, dynamic cultural offerings, interest in education, and green space. The city also demonstrates a continuing commitment to revitalization efforts, as evidenced by such recognition as an EPA-awarded grant (the Brownfields Area-Wide Planning Grant). The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (Public Law 115-97), which created Qualified Opportunity Zones (QOZs), will help keep this revitalization momentum going.
Highlights of Huntington, WV Opportunity Zones
Geographically, the city of Huntington is and always has been a hub of activity. West Virginia, Ohio, and Kentucky meet at the Port of Huntington, which sits on the Ohio River. This waterway and nearby access to interstates make Huntington a robust transportation center ripe for commerce, able to easily transport products and materials including coal, oil, chemicals, and steel by water or by the city's proximity to both I-64 and US 60. These roadways easily link to other interstates including I-65, I-70, I-71, I-75, I-77, I-79, and I-81.
The three selected Huntington, WV Opportunity Zones are all unique despite being located in just one city. They include the Guyandotte area, the West End Huntington neighborhood, and the downtown Huntington development.
All three QOZs are in or near areas of revitalization, where existing businesses offer employment and prospects for further development are ripe. Large employers like DirecTV and the Amazon Customer Service Center are strategically located in Kinetic Park near I-64.
Beyond employment, each of the three QOZs has its own particular draw to investors. The Guyandotte development is found in a historic neighborhood of Huntington located at the confluence of the Ohio River and the Guyandotte River. The area is ripe with historical homes and near Huntington's downtown area.
The downtown Huntington development is an area covering the Riverfront as well as the Old Main Corridor that connects the downtown with Marshall University. The university added to local attractions by its redevelopment of the Stone & Thomas Building for visual arts, while The Market between 3rd and 4th Avenues offers a range of shops, stores, restaurants, and other businesses for those working or fixating the downtown area.
The city also hosts many concerts and events such as Chilifest, West Virginia's Comic Con (Tricon), and NCAA college sports. The university continues its commitment to education with its biotechnology center and new engineering facilities. Revitalization efforts in downtown Pullman Square are exciting. Visitors can also enjoy vibrant green spaces and parks such as Ritter Park and Historic District, Harris Riverfront Park, and Beech Fork State Park.
The West End tract is a large one, extending west of Huntington and including Westmoreland Park. This QOZ also encompasses part of Wayne County at Coalfield Development, an organization focused on "rebuilding of the Appalachian economy from the ground up." The spirit of redevelopment and community-building is high in this area, and the region is receptive to doing even more.
Next Steps for Interested Investors in Huntington, WV Opportunity Zones
Investment opportunities in the Huntington, WV Opportunity Zones are abundant in both size and character, and Huntington is eager to continue the spirit of revitalization both in its economy and in the perseverance of Huntington's rich heritage.
For more information on the Opportunity Zones around Huntington, this clickable map lets you drill down to the particular area in which you are interested. Census information such as median income, population, and unemployment rate is also available. Investors are not limited to commercial real estate, housing development, startups, or bulk transport businesses, although these are all ideal local projects. Given the nature and dynamics of the vibrant Huntington geography and culture, the opportunities are as boundless as the pastoral green spaces of the Mountain State.
Help for Interested Opportunity Zone Investors
To start the process of investing in a QOZ in West Virginia and explore the possibilities, contact Steve Golder, head of the business and commercial practice group at Jenkins Fenstermaker, PLLC. Steve is a lifelong Huntington resident and active in the community and area leadership. He works out of the Huntington firm headquarters, providing area businesses the benefit of his legal and local insight to the area and its industries. You can reach Steve at (304) 523-2100 or (866) 617-4736 or by using his online contact form.