Bluefield townhall held for input on how to make the community better

Published: Mar. 13, 2023 at 11:18 PM EDT
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BLUEFIELD, W.Va. (WVVA) - Community members primarily from the Northside and East end of Bluefield attended a townhall meeting at the Greater Mt. Zion Pentecostal Church on Monday, evening.

This is the second town hall meeting held by the City of Bluefield and Virginia Tech’s Center of Housing Research to gather information on housing, infrastructure, and public safety in the community.

Students from Virginia Tech were there to break the meeting down into groups to focus on how community members want their community to look like. The problems and concerns that each community member spoke about was documented and will be used to see how recently awarded federal grants will be used.

The city was awarded $1 million for the Reconnect Communities Polit Program grant and $500,000 for the Safe Streets Program grant. Bluefield was one of three cities in the country to by awarded the $1 million grant and city officials are excited on what this means for the community.

Bluefield city council member, Treyvon Simmons, says this makes Bluefield special, “That’s what makes Bluefield Special the fact that we were able to be one of three. Bluefield has always been unique. It has taken time. I’m glad the world especially the United States sees how unique Bluefield really is.”

Former President of the American Medical Association Dr. Patrice Harris, who is also a Bluefield native was in attendance at the meeting. She is working to help revitalize Bluefield focusing on the historical African-America parts of the city. “There’s a history that has been untold or at least not told enough and that is the history of African Americans, in particularly in Southern West Virginia but really all across the state. And I think there is such an opportunity to lift that up as we think about economic development of Bluefield, the Northside and in particularly my side of town the East End,” said Harris

The next schedule town hall will be at Bluefield Fitness and Rec on College Ave. starting at 6 p.m.