Bristol economic development efforts get $500,000 federal boost

2 mins read

BRISTOL — Two economic development projects in Addison and Essex Counties are receiving significant infusions of federal funds.

Through a unique partnership between the Northern Border Regional Commission and the U.S. Economic Development Administration, the agencies will be awarding $500,000 to the town of Bristol, and $390,130 to the Northeast Kingdom Development Corporation.

The award to Bristol will help advance development plans for a commercial park as part of a public-private partnership between the town and local developers Kevin Harper and David Blittersdorf, who are partners in Stoney Hill Properties, LLC.

Bristol has a solid track record of incubating successful business that ultimately choose to expand in other communities because of a lack of commercial space in town.

The federal funds can support the construction of infrastructure such as a roadway, communication, and storm drainage.

“The property that has come to be known as Stoney Hill was purchased from the State of Vermont by the town of Bristol some 20 years ago in the hopes of developing a business park there,” Harper said. “The recent purchase of lands adjacent to that property brought new life to the original vision by providing viable access to the Stoney Hill site.”

Harper said that with the grant funds, Stoney Hill Properties and the town of Bristol can build out the necessary infrastructure and site work so that successful startups can continue to grow in their home town and keep jobs in the very village they live in.

“This project is a great example of various public and private organizations working together to achieve the shared goal of incubating, growing, and retaining businesses and jobs in Bristol and Addison County,” Valerie Capels, Bristol Town Manager, said.

She says the ribbon-cutting for this new facility will be a long-awaited celebration.