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Economic Development Plans & Current Projects


During 2017, the Accomack-Northampton Economic Development Committee undertook a process to merge two regional economic development plans for the Eastern Shore of Virginia: the Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (in place since 2002) and the Stronger Economies Together Economic Development Plan (in place since 2016) into one comprehensive document. The resulting merged plan, the Eastern Shore of Virginia Regional Economic Development Plan, presents a unified, comprehensive strategy for regional economic development and opens up opportunities for funding from economic development-focused agencies such as the US Economic Development Administration, US Department of Agriculture, and others. The plan is updated semi-annually with new data and updates to four industry sector-focused action plans.

The A-NPDC has contracted with Thomas P. Miller & Associates to assist the region in updating the Accomack-Northampton Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS), also known as the Eastern Shore Regional Economic Development Plan. The update will include economic recovery and resiliency initiatives and elements as well. We look forward to working with partners on this important process through the fall of 2021!

Eastern Shore of Virginia Regional Economic Development Plan (2017-2022) –
Adopted December 2017,
Updated June & October 2018; June 2019; June 2020, November 2021

Current Industry Sector Action Plans (last updated June 2020)

Four standing industry cluster-focused subcommittees of the A-N Economic Development Committee have been established and meet regularly to strategize and implement the plans. These meetings are open to everyone. Anyone interested in adding a regional goal or objective to an Action Plan is encouraged to do so by first attending a subcommittee meeting of your choice and developing a proposal using the following guidelines. The A-N Economic Development Committee reviews and considers all proposed regional goals and objectives for approval and inclusion in the Regional Economic Development Plan.

Below are the current action plans by industry cluster. You may add comments to individual cells and/or in the final column of each Goal’s tab within the Sheet for consideration during subcommittee and full Committee meetings.


  • Rural Business Development: Hotel Market Study
    • The proposed project will assess the market for and feasibility of expansion of the Wachapreague Hotel. Specifically, this study will examine potential visitors traveling from urban centers such as Washington, D.C.; Richmond and Hampton Roads, Virginia; Baltimore, Maryland; and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to stay one or more nights in the Hotel. The feasibility study will contribute to community economic development through increasing hotel capacity and employment, as well as bolstering tourism dollars spent in restaurants, to charter boat companies, and other tourism-based businesses in the Town of Wachapreague and both Accomack and Northampton counties on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. Scheduled to be completed in 2021.
  • Rural Business Development: Expanding Opportunities for Agricultural Producers on Virginia’s Eastern Shore (2019)
    • The A-NPDC, with consultants from Virginia Tech’s Office of Economic Development, conducted a feasibility study examining opportunities to expand business for agriculture and aquaculture producers and artisans on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. The study assessed the viability of a regional marketplace, aggregation and distribution of products, and a regional marketing or branding strategy. The final report can be found here. One of the report’s recommendations was to develop the idea of an ESVA Made & Grown branding option, a Work Group has been convened for that purpose, more information can be found here.
  • Planning for Community and Economic Development on Virginia’s Eastern Shore (2018) – Final Report Available Here
    • The A-NPDC hosted a Strategic Planning Session for Housing, Community, and Economic Development Leaders. The purpose of this working meeting was to inform state agencies of desired and prospective implementation and construction projects on Virginia’s Eastern Shore relating to housing, community, and economic development. This information is intended to be used to connect local stakeholders with appropriate funding programs and agency contacts when seeking to implement their projects.
  • Building Collaborative Communities (2017) – Final Report Available Here    (Full Report with Appendices)
  • Socio-Economic Impacts of Conserved Land on Virginia’s Eastern Shore (2017) – Final Report Available Here
    • The Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program commissioned the study, which serves as a tremendous asset for land-use and economic planning


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