Area Development


ARC’s Area Development program relies on a flexible “bottom up” approach to economic development, empowering Appalachian communities to work with their state governments to design impactful investment opportunities supporting our mission and investment priorities.

Within the scope of ARC’s Strategic Plan, the Area Development program makes investments in two general areas: critical infrastructure and business and workforce development. Critical infrastructure investments mainly include water and wastewater systems, transportation networks, broadband, and other projects anchoring regional economic development. Business and workforce investments primarily focus on entrepreneurship, worker training and education, food systems, leadership, and other human capital development.

  • Area development grants are awarded to projects that address one or more of ARC’s 5 Strategic Investment Goals:
  1. Building Appalachian Businesses
  2. Building Appalachia’s Workforce Ecosystem
  3. Building Appalachia’s Infrastructure
  4. Building Regional Culture and Tourism
  5. Building Community Leaders and Capacity
  • Projects must demonstrate measurable results.
    • Typically, ARC project grants are awarded to:
      • State and local agencies
      • Governmental entities
      • Local governing boards
      • Nonprofit organizations

The Northwest Commission is proud to have provided technical assistance to the following applications which were awarded funding for their projects. 

ARC Awards Graphic