|Haysi, Va., is hoping to attract tourists and new businesses. |
(Voice of America photo by Nadeem Yaqub)
Cleveland, Va., has lost most of its businesses and all of its schools, Yaqub writes. "But what Cleveland does have that no downturn in the coal industry can touch is scenic mountain trails and the Clinch River, which runs through town. The local community, along with local and state partners, is implementing an action plan to develop tourism in the area. And recently, an entrepreneur opened a rental store for kayaking and rafting enthusiasts near the city’s Town Hall."
Other towns are thinking along the same lines, Yaqub writes. The nearby town of Haysi has been improving its infrastructure—new signs, paint, windows, doors, lighting—with the hopes of attracting visitors and businesses, while in Tazewell County, Virginia, a 37-mile trail is being developed for all-terrain vehicles near a mine site.