2020 has had incredible challenges and many of us would like a “do over”. But Audubon County has been very fortunate in that we have had new businesses open, new residents have moved into our communities, unemployment rates declined, and we saw amazing community spirit throughout the entire year in so many different ways. Audubon County Economic Development (ACED) and tourism have been working on projects pertaining to housing, continuing to clean up blighted properties, providing information on available funding sources for our communities and businesses and promoting the attractions and things to enjoy while in Audubon County.
On the housing front, plans are underway to construct on lots donated by Rich & Lela Gleason. Another project includes a developer that has shown interest in building rental townhomes in Audubon addressing issues identified in the 2020 Housing Study. We hope that everything will come together to see this project move forward. ACED also continues to fund a residential demolition program.
Main streets and highway corridors are often a community’s first impression. It is the identity we provide for our visitors. We only get one chance at those impressions to invite our visitors into our communities. In an effort to provide that fantastic first impression, our office is working to address blighted properties hoping to make lasting improvements in these areas. ACED was involved with three projects through the Residential and Commercial Demolition Program in 2020. Applications are on first come, first serve basis and subject to board approval. A recent exciting project is the acquisition of the M&M Garage located on the Hwy 71 corridor with the plan of clearing the property and making it ready for new development.
We are happy to announce a new program that will be available to business owners – The Business Facade Improvement Program. The new program is for businesses located in the main street and corridor areas of our communities. The program will provide a matching reimbursement grant to make improvements to the facades of their buildings (windows, signage, awnings, etc.). Please contact our office for more information on the program or to pick up an application.
Business and community surveys are now available to business owners and community members. The surveys will help identify areas to focus on in the upcoming year(s). The surveys touch on topics such as curb appeal of main street and corridor areas, recreation/entertainment, available resources and more. We encourage everyone to take a moment to take the survey to help provide our office with valuable information to help our communities continue to thrive.
We look forward to welcoming in 2021 and all of the possibilities that await us!
ACED & Toursim