Huntington has advanced to the finals of the America’s Best Communities competition.
A panel of judges selected Huntington as one of eight finalists in the national competition at the conclusion of the America’s Best Communities Summit on Wednesday in Durham, North Carolina. America’s Best Communities aims to inspire economic revitalization in small towns and cities across the country. The competition is sponsored by Frontier Communications, DISH Network, CoBank and The Weather Channel.
“The nation was introduced today to the wonderful story of Huntington’s resilience,” said Mayor Steve Williams, who gave a presentation on Huntington’s community revitalization plan Wednesday morning at the America’s Best Communities Summit. “The partnerships we have cultivated have given our city and region a sense of hope, and the America’s Best Communities competition has given us an opportunity to showcase our results on a national stage.
“Congratulations, Huntington! We are setting a standard that others will choose to follow. Now, it’s time to roll up our sleeves. We have work to do.”
As a finalist in the competition, Huntington will receive a grant prize of $100,000 and will have 11 months to begin to implement its strategies. The top three communities that make the largest impact and show the greatest potential for achieving sustainable revitalization will be selected as the grand prize winners. The top community will receive $3 million, with second place earning $2 million and $1 million for third.
In its community revitalization plan, also known as the Huntington Innovation Project (HIP), the city outlined projects and ideas that will help jumpstart the local economy and enhance quality of life.
It focused on transforming struggling neighborhoods and blighted spaces into hubs for advanced making and manufacturing. The plan focuses on three key initiatives in the Highlawn, Fairfield and West End neighborhoods and how they can be linked with high-speed broadband. The Huntington Innovation Project will renew the community and become a gateway for revitalization in the Tri-State and Appalachian region.
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