MADISON, W.Va. — During an interview with the Coal Valley News Feb. 11, Kris Mitchell, director of the Boone County Community and Economic Development Corporation (EDC), stated plans are moving ahead for the eventual development for the former Hobet mine site.
During his Jan. 13 State of the State Address, Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin announced the development of the property on the border of Boone and Lincoln counties.
Tomblin noted, “We are also proposing to develop the largest industrial site in West Virginia history at the former Hobet surface mine in Boone and Lincoln counties. With 12,000 acres located just off Corridor G, this site is largest enough to fit virtually every major economic development project in recent history…”
The 12,000 acre site is reportedly big enough to house an airport the size of Atlanta International Airport twice over.
During the bankruptcy of Patriot Coal, most of the Hobet surface mine site was purchased by the Virginia Conservation Legacy Fund (VCLF).
In his speech, the governor also announced the state’s application for $140 million in grants to help spur its development; however, bad news quickly came in form of a denial for the grant.
Mitchell reported the W.Va. Department of Commerce is taking the lead on the project who recently conducted a meeting with development authority leaders in Boone and Lincoln counties.
“Frankly, the project is moving more quickly than I imagined…