Downtown getting leap forward

Published 10:25 am Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Every penny counts, and sixty million of them are coming to Franklin in order to bolster the downtown. Our city was fortunate enough to be named as a recipient for the Virginia Community Business Launch to fund the Downtown Franklin Association’s new “Leap Forward Franklin” program.

As we understand it, the intention is to encourage startup businesses, particularly for restaurants and retail. If there’s someone who has a viable business idea to feed, clothe or entertain people, now is the time to polish up that plan and make it ready for inspection.

If selected, classes and a mentorship would be included — required, even — to help guide the business owner with the nuts and bolts, such as bookkeeping and marketing.

Our hope is that whoever or whatever gets a chunk of those funds will also get the support it needs from residents in Western Tidewater. A person can open up nearly any kind of retail shop in town, but if no one’s willing to patronize it, then there’s little to no chance the place will survive.