Economic Development

When the term “economic development” is mentioned, the first thing the first thing that likely comes to mind for many is some type of a business or manufacturing company that will employ dozens of people. Hino Motors’ operation in Williamstown certainly is a fine example of that type of economic development.

However, if people think developer Mike Miller’s announcement this week of his plans to build a new retirement community is not economic development, they are mistaken.

Miller discussed his plans for Lakeside Landing Retirement Community, a self-contained retirement community, during a meeting Tuesday at Grand Pointe Conference Center in Vienna. The development, which would be the first of its kind in West Virginia, will be built on 300 acres he owns just off the Staunton Avenue exit of Interstate 77. The initial phase of the operation will cost between $28 million and $35 million to complete and will include 100 independent living apartments, 60 assisted living units, three restaurants and several other amenities for residents.

Miller, who owns Ohio Valley Health Care, is showing a vast degree of confidence in Wood County’s future. He has owned this property for 10 years. With the economy the way it’s been the past several years, he could have sold this land. However, this project has been a dream of his and he has decided this is the right time for this dream to become a reality. With the U.S. population aging, many of the baby boomers retiring with sizable disposable incomes are looking for something such as this in which to spend their retirement years.

Miller said ground will not be broken until he and developers have 70 clients signed on, but we believe that will come sooner rather than later. This project will not only bring employment to Wood County, it will bring spin-off businesses to the community as well.

This development is good news, and we wish Miller and the others involved in this project the best of luck.