Farmville Downtown Partnership asks how to use empty buildings

Published 7:48 pm Thursday, March 2, 2023

FARMVILLE – Something new is coming to Main Street, but first, the Farmville Downtown Partnership is taking time to figure out what that will be. 

Currently, two buildings on Main Street are sitting empty but full of potential. Located at 109 and 111 North Main Street, one is currently on the market with the other unusable. The Farmville Downtown Partnership is hosting a study to see how viable these buildings are and how they can be best utilized on Main Street. 

What is the study?

The study will see what would make the most sense for these buildings. Since one, if not both of them, will need serious renovations, the study is taking many aspects into consideration before deciding what to do, including what the area needs, what will be the most cost-effective, what’s best for the environment and what will be the best use of the space.

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“We want to see how to best put these buildings back into service so they can be utilized and active on Main Street,” said Nancy Alexander, Farmville Downtown Partnership executive director.

The Farmville Downtown Partnership is working with Summit Design and Engineering Services to make this happen. This company has done a lot with doing studies for creating structures to act as spaces for pop-up shops. They will also talk to residents to see what Farmville wants to see added to Main Street. 

According to Alexander, this project has been fast-tracked as she expects to have the full report in her hand by April. She wants to make sure that a decision is made as soon as possible so that they can apply for grants and get the funding they need to make these new actions a reality.

“We’re very excited to see the possible uses for this space,” said Alexander.

Farmville Downtown Partnership funds project

To fund this study, the Farmville Downtown Partnership received funding from a Financial Feasibility Grant (FFG) from Virginia Main Street. 

Once the project starts moving forward to bring business to these buildings, the partnership has received some American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds that were set aside for mixed-use on Main Street. They also hope to receive additional funding from the Mixed Use on Main Street grant from Virginia Main Street. 

This money is planned to go towards purchasing the buildings and doing any remodeling or rehabilitating work to prepare for whichever use is decided after the study. If the buildings are purchased by someone else in the meantime, Alexander plans on working with the owner to create something great for Main Street.