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Smart Growth

Livable Communities in Appalachia

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Background

Screenshot of map from Community Stories story mapLearn about how Livable Communities in Appalachia and other EPA efforts helped Williamson, WV, use local foods and health facilities to drive revitalization in EPA's "Community Stories" story map (link will open in a new window or tab).Across the Appalachia region, small towns and rural communities want to revitalize their traditional downtowns to boost the local economy and improve quality of life. EPA partnered with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), a regional economic development agency, to provide these towns with information about smart growth approaches through the Livable Communities in Appalachia program. These approaches can help towns restore their downtowns and neighborhoods, making them healthy, walkable, and economically vibrant.

There will be no further rounds of Livable Communities in Appalachia assistance. For similar assistance, see Local Foods, Local Places, which helps communities develop and implement action plans that promote local foods and downtown revitalization.

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Communities Selected in 2014

In 2014, EPA, ARC, and USDA selected four Appalachian communities to receive technical support and implementation assistance to promote economic development, preserve rural lands, and increase access to locally grown food:

  • Forest City, North Carolina
  • Huntington, West Virginia
  • New Albany, Mississippi
  • North Wilkesboro, North Carolina

Read a news release about communities selected in 2014.

Small-town development experts worked with each community to develop achievable plans for local production, distribution, and promotion of healthy foods. Learn about the action plans on ARC's web page, Eight Appalachian Communities Create "Livable Communities" Action Plans to Develop Local Food Systems.

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Communities Selected in 2013

In 2013, EPA and ARC, joined by USDA, selected four Appalachian communities to receive technical support and implementation assistance to promote economic development, preserve rural lands, and increase access to locally grown food:

  • Aberdeen, Mississippi
  • Anniston, Alabama
  • Corbin, Kentucky
  • Pikeville, Tennessee

Read a news release about communities selected in 2013.

Small-town development experts worked with each community to develop achievable plans for local production, distribution, and promotion of healthy foods. Learn about the action plans on ARC's web page, Eight Appalachian Communities Create "Livable Communities" Action Plans to Develop Local Food Systems.

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Communities Selected in 2012

In 2012, EPA and ARC provided technical assistance to seven Appalachian communities seeking to address specific development challenges:

  • Brownsville, Pennsylvania
  • Connellsville, Pennsylvania
  • Independence, Virginia
  • Salamanca, New York
  • Spruce Pine, North Carolina
  • Uhrichsville, Ohio
  • Williamson, West Virginia

Representatives from each town worked with small-town development experts to create action plans that use smart growth approaches. Learn how on ARC's web page, Seven Appalachian Communities Develop “Livable Communities” Action Plans.

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