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Brundidge awarded grant for incubator business

The City of Brundidge has been awarded a USDA Rural Development Grant in an amount up to $100,000 to be used for the renovation of the former Haisten Hardware building on North Main Street for use as an incubator business.

Britt Thomas, Brundidge city manager, told the Brundidge City Council at its Tuesday meeting that he was informed that the grant has been approved and official notification is forthcoming.

“This is good news for the city as the incubator business will offer office space to those who want to start a business but are not ready to purchase or lease a building,” Thomas said. “There probably will be five office spaces and each will have a storefront.”

The spaces will be offered at a rate less than the cost of leasing/renting a building. The benefits to the city will be realized when a start-up businesses outgrows its incubator space and moves into a business space in the downtown area.  Thomas said the incubator business is an opportunity for Brundidge to grow its business community.

The city’s match for the USDA Rural Development Grant will be $10,000.  Thomas said architectural and engineering work must be done before renovations can begin. The actual work probably will not begin until around January.

Brundidge Mayor Isabell Boyd said the USDA Rural Development Grant will provide a basis for future growth in the city of 2,000.

“We are always looking for ways to bring new businesses to Brundidge,” Boyd said. “An incubator business is something that we have been considering for a long time. We are excited that it will soon become a reality. We are very appreciative of this grant and what it will mean to our city. I say to those who are business minded but have been waiting for the right opportunity, this is the time.”

In other business, Thomas said renovation work on the former BB&T building that is being renovated for use as Brundidge City Hall is nearing completion.

“We are close to moving in,” Thomas told the council members. “Of course, we are computer dependent so our move will have to be done so that our computer service is not disrupted.”

No date has been set for Brundidge City Hall to move into its new location.

The use for the present city hall, which is located in the historic Bass house, has not been determined. However, some improvements to the building are needed and will be made once the building is vacated.

Thomas informed the council that power lines are being moved from the wooded area across Mims Creek to the other side of Johnson Street to ensure more dependable service in that area.

The Brundidge City Council meets at 6 p.m. on the first and third Tuesdays of the month at Brundidge City Hall.

The meetings are open to the public.