By Wayne Allen
The Scioto County Commissioners passed a resolution Thursday in support of the concept of Corridor Heritage Tourism Initiative Project. The initiative is coming from the Ohio Valley Regional Development Commission (OVRDC) and Ohio Valley Resource Conservation and Development Program (RC&D).
The resolution passed by the Scioto County Commissioners states, “the Ohio Valley Regional Development Commission, the Ohio Valley RC&D Council and the County Boards of Commissioners in Southern Ohio are committed to promoting economic development within the Southern Ohio region. Among the most recognized resources for providing effective economic growth in Southern Ohio include the culture, history beauty and natural resources available across Southern Ohio.”
The resolution further states, previous study has indicated substantial benefits to Southern Ohio by organizing and promoting Southern Ohio as a tourist destination through the Appalachian Corridor Project.
“(OVRDC and OVRC&D) are working on a concept or idea of a corridor heritage tourism initiative project and they were wanting a resolution in support of that,” said Mike Crabtree, chairman of the Scioto County Commissioners.
John Hemmings, executive director of OVRDC, said this project has been a longtime in the making.
“A few years back (5-10 years ago) the Ohio Valley Resource Conservation and Development Program got some money to do a study to look at State Route 32 through Appalachia as a heritage corridor, promoting tourism,” Hemmings said. “At the end of the study a brand was developed, their thought was to make the corridor the fourth c of Ohio, Columbus, Cleveland, Cincinnati and the Corridor.”
Hemmings said there was a lot of time and money invested in this project.
“When the study was done there was no where to do with it, the money was not there to move the project forward,” Hemmings said.
Ohio Valley Resource Conservation and Development Program approached OVRDC about taking over the project.
“I said we would be glad to take the lead in the project in conjunction with them. We also want to work with the visitors bureaus in each county,” Hemmings said. “Now we are not only looking at the route 32 corridor, also route 50 and route 52.”
Hemmings said the concept is being aimed at getting people to come to the area for a visit. He said plans are ongoing for the corridor and will be developed as time moves along.
Wayne Allen can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 228 or on Twitter @WayneallenPDT.