Here is the press release from Reid Walters, out Town manager.
The Independence Town Council received notification from the United States Department of Agriculture that they have received $175,000 to help fund the construction of a farmers market on the town lot located at the corner of Highway 21 and Highway 58.The farmers market is a significant element of the build-out of a future municipal park to be built at this location. This will be Independence’s first municipal park.
In 2011, the town of Independence was awarded a technical assistance grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission and Environmental Protection Agency to conduct a community economic development assessment blueprint. The outcome of this process projected the construction of a farmers market as one of the key economic development tools needed for business development in downtown Independence. Last year, the town updated its downtown master plan in anticipation of beginning the construction portion of this project and began the process of seeking state and federal funding. This generous allotment from USDA gets Independence closer to the construction of the farmers market.
The Independence Town Council recognizes the Independence Farmers Market as a key venue to build economic growth and entrepreneurship and has made the construction of the market one of its economic development priorities. In the Independence Town Council’s continued efforts to help spur downtown redevelopment, the farmers market project, and the construction of a town park; Town Council has appropriated $130,000 for the construction phase of this project and spent an additional $60,000 for sitework and engineering services. The Independence Town Council would like to extend its appreciation toward the vendors and leaders of the Independence Farmers Market for everything they do to help make Independence a great place to live and do business. Securing this funding from USDA gets us all closer to our goal.