In the News, October 2012
AREVA OPENS NEW U.S. TECHNICAL CENTER
The AREVA U.S. Technical Center in Lynchburg is officially open. The U.S. Technical Center is a major component of the AREVA Solutions Complex—a full service campus of development and testing facilities designed to support utility clients and equipment manufacturers. The AREVA Solutions Complex will now be home to the most comprehensive and innovative nuclear testing capabilities in North America.
The U.S. Technical Center features a seismic analysis laboratory with one of the largest multi-axial shake table of its capabilities in the U.S. Powered by an 18,000 horse power hydraulic power supply that draws up to two Megawatts of power, the AREVA shake table is capable of testing items weighing up to 10 tons. Other features of the U.S. Technical Center include environmental chambers to test the performance of components and products in harsh conditions, metallurgical and chemistry labs to evaluate material properties including a scanning electron microscope and industrial ovens for thermal aging to support commercial grade dedication testing of safety-related components.
FUTURE FOCUS FOUNDATION TO HOST 2012 FIRST LEGO LEAGUE TOURNAMENT
The Lynchburg Regional FIRST LEGO League Tournament will be held November 10 at Timberlake Christian School. FIRST LEGO League is a fun hands-on learning program for children ages 9 to 14 begun by Central Virginia Community College. Now in its seventh year of competition, the Future Focus Foundation has agreed to keep offering this valuable program to Region 2000 youth with the continued support of CVCC.
Teams of up to 10 youth compete in a robot programming competition, robot design, project and presentation, and core values. Those interested in helping to start a FIRST LEGO team should visit www.futurefocusfoundation.us.
DR. BELL MEMORIAL FUND NEARS COMPLETION
The Dr. John Bell Bicycling Awareness Memorial Fund, dedicated to the late Dr. John Bell and developed for the purpose of increasing bicycle awareness, education and safety in our region, is nearing completion. This first public/private cost-share partnership between VDOT, Lynchburg City, Region 2000 and local cyclists for the specific purpose of implementing bicycle facility installation and promoting safety and awareness in our region was a success.
The Dr. John Bicycling Awareness Memorial Fund generated $5,782 in private donated funds from 33 different businesses, organizations and individual donors. In addition, Dominion Sign Group Incorporated donated a total of 32 signs that the company produced pro-bono, with a value of approximately $2,400, to show respect and dedication to the late Dr. Bell. Donated staff time from VDOT and Lynchburg City, which included planning and installation, was also plentiful.
Sixty-one “Share the Road” signs will be installed along approximately 131 miles of road located in and around the City of Lynchburg. In addition, a portion of the Dr. Bell Memorial Fund will be used to assist installing bicycle facilities along Rivermont Avenue. Share the Road sign installation should be completed in October. For more information, or to see a map of the new sign locations, contact email@example.com.
THE LYNCHBURG HUMANE SOCIETY UNVEILS RENDERING OF PLANNED ADOPTION CENTER
The Lynchburg Humane Society Board of Directors, along with their Capital Campaign Committee, have unveiled a new plan for the state-of-the-art, 25,000-square-foot Humane Education and Adoption Center. The new facility will further the Humane Society’s commitment to saving the lives of pets in the local community and will be a major advancement in its mission to promote adoption and education about animals. The total projected cost of the project is $5.6 million and includes the cost of the property, site work and construction of the new building. The capital campaign, chaired by Rosemary and George Dawson, is underway with a goal of $4.8 million.
“We are delighted to be part of this effort,” George Dawson said. “Our community cares about our pets and recognizes that this new facility is desperately needed as demonstrated by the strong support we have received in the early stages of the campaign.”
The new center will be located on Old Graves Mill Road and will feature an open and inviting atmosphere to encourage adoption, volunteering and education for the community. Features of the new building include “real life” rooms where dogs will live in a home-like environment, group rooms for cats where they can roam free, climb on platforms and hide in cubby holes and a separate housing room for puppies, called “Puppyville.” A complete medical center for the shelter pets is included that will allow them to get proper medical care and quality housing.
The new facility will not only increase the number of animals that can be housed at any given time by 147 percent, but it will also feature new programs to encourage education for children and pet owners.
The Humane Society has raised $1.7 million and is a third of the way to its goal. More information can be found at www.lynchburghumane.org.
WINTERGREEN RESORT TO UNDERGO $12 MILLION IN IMPROVEMENTS
Nearly $12 million will be invested in facilities and infrastructure improvements at Wintergreen Resort over the next 16 months by the James C. Justice Companies. The improvements are highlighted by an immediate $6 million infusion, in cooperation with the Nelson County Service Authority, to build a five-million gallon raw water storage tank and pumping station that will double the resort’s snowmaking capacity for the upcoming ski season, as well as provide a redundant water supply to the water treatment plant.
The new high-tech snowmaking equipment will allow Wintergreen Resort, twice named “Best Ski Resort” by readers of WashingtonPost.com, to open more ski and snowboard terrain earlier and to deliver more consistent snow conditions throughout the season.
As part of the renovation, the golf course and facilities at Devils Knob will be privatized. Access will be available to members, their guests and registered resort guests starting with the spring 2014 season. At an elevation of 3,850 feet, the Devils Knob golf course, designed by Ellis and Dan Maples, is the highest in Virginia with 50-mile views of the Shenandoah and Rockfish Valleys. The Justice Companies have committed another $3.2 million to maintenance and improvements throughout the resort.
“This investment reflects our commitment to Wintergreen Resort,” said James C. Justice, II, Chairman, President and CEO of James C. Justice Companies, Inc. and The Greenbrier Resort. “Our vision is to make this among the top four-season resort experiences in the east and we see tremendous opportunities in developing new membership programs and vacation packages. The Wintergreen facilities are spectacular and the entire Resort has a tremendous impact on the local and regional tourism industry.”
For more information about Wintergreen Resort, visit www.wintergreenresort.com.
LYNCHBURG’S TOURISM REVENUE GROWTH CONTINUES TO EXCEL
Governor Bob McDonnell’s recent announcement that tourism in Virginia became a $20 billion industry in 2011 was good economic news not just for the Commonwealth as a whole. Data released by the United States Travel Association (USTA) reveals that every locality in Virginia posted an increase in tourism revenue last year. According to the USTA, tourism in Virginia generated $20.4 billion in revenue, an eight percent increase over 2010. Tourism also supported 207,000 jobs in the Commonwealth and provided $1.32 billion in state and local taxes. In terms of those numbers tourism is the third largest industry in Virginia.
Locally, tourism was again a vital component to Lynchburg’s economic health in 2011. Annual tourism revenue for the city of Lynchburg reached a record $156 Million, an 8.8 percent increase over 2010. Local tourism-supported jobs totaled 1,520 while local tourism-related taxes collected totaled $6 Million, a 4 percent increase. All data was received by the Virginia Tourism Corporation from USTA and is based on domestic visitor spending (travelers from within the United States) from per person trips taken 50 miles or more away from home. Lynchburg also has an aggressive international campaign which is showing positive return, however this most recent report concentrates on domestic travelers only.
“A $13 million annual increase in visitor spending … this is fantastic news for Lynchburg, as tourism continues to be a top economic engine for our city,” Beckie Nix, Director of Tourism for the Lynchburg Regional Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, said. “The city and region is such a great product to market, and Lynchburg’s continuing success as a destination belongs to all the wonderful hospitality stakeholders and local tourism partners who work so hard to make it happen.”
STATE DATA SHOW LEAP IN GRADUATION NUMBERS FOR LCS
New data released by the Department of Education suggest that Lynchburg City Schools (LCS) is making steady progress in accomplishing its new mission—every child, by name and by need, to graduation.
Last month, the Department of Education released data showing that the LCS Federal Graduation Indicator (FGI) leapt nearly 5 percent from the 2011 graduation numbers.
“Our improvement in the graduation rate is the foundation of our new Comprehensive Plan that focuses on achievement, behavior and culture,” said LCS superintendent Dr. Scott Brabrand. “This plan will move LCS from good to great as we fulfill our mission to lead every child, by name and by need, to graduation.”
The results showed the division’s FGI at 74.63 percent, a rise from 69.28 percent the previous year. The Federal Graduation Indicator includes the percentage of students obtaining a standard or advanced diploma. It does not, however, include students who earn modified standard diplomas, special diplomas or GEDs.
The FGI also increased across all four subgroups (blacks, whites, economically disadvantaged and students with disabilities) noted in the 2012-2014 Comprehensive Plan.
CENTRA COMPREHENSIVE BREAST PROGRAM RECEIVES NATIONAL ACCREDITATION
Centra’s Comprehensive Breast Cancer Program has been awarded a Three-Year Full Accreditation for demonstrating compliance with and commitment to all the standards established by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Cancers (NAPBC), an association of national, professional organizations dedicated to the improvement of the quality of care and the monitoring of outcomes for patients with diseases of the breast. NAPBC accredited breast centers have met the criteria set forth and have undergone a rigorous application process and on-site survey to assure the NAPBC standards are being met.
Centra received accreditation by excelling in center leadership, clinical management, research, community outreach, professional education, and quality improvement. As one of the first centers to be nationally accredited three years ago, this accomplishment of re-accreditation shows continued quality improvement and dedication to a breast program that exceeds patient expectations and assures patients access to a full range of high level care and services.
UPCOMING BUSINESS EVENTS
“Federal Regulation and Your Business: What Lies Ahead and How to Fight Back”
Lynchburg Regional Chamber, 2015 Memorial Avenue, Lynchburg
8 to 9 a.m.
Glenn Spencer, Vice President of the Workforce Freedom Initiative of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce will discuss top line labor issues, how the NLRB and DOL decisions affect you as an employer and what every employer should know. Space is limited. RSVP by contacting the Chamber at (434) 845-5966 or firstname.lastname@example.org or register online.
Business Leader’s Roundtable
Lynchburg Regional Chamber, 2015 Memorial Avenue, Lynchburg
2 to 3 p.m.
Lieutenant Governor Bolling will lead a roundtable business discussion, centered on state and federal regulations that are preventing business development and job growth. Your feedback will be used to develop action items for the 2013 General Assembly legislative session. Space is limited. RSVP by contacting the Chamber at (434) 845-5966 or email@example.com.
Sam’s Club Grand Re-Opening & Ribbon Cutting
3912 Wards Road, Lynchburg
Celebrate the Grand Re-Opening of Sam’s Club and enjoy tasty refreshments while you mingle with other Chamber members.
Central VA Industries Council (CVIC) Business Membership Roundtable & Networking Breakfast
Lynchburg Regional Airport, 350 Terminal Drive (Main Terminal), Lynchburg
7:30 to 9 a.m.
TOPIC: Air Service at LYH: National Trends & Local Impact. This breakfast is ideal for manufacturers and industrial leaders and anyone who wants to sustain growth and retain a strong workforce. Cost is $15 (includes breakfast) for CVIC members, and $25 for non-members. RSVP required by November 9 to firstname.lastname@example.org or (434) 845-5966.
Lynchburg Regional Chamber’s Holiday Showcase Presented by First Bank & Trust Company
Phase 2, 4009 Murray Place, Lynchburg
5:30 to 8 p.m.
Sample delectable foods from area caterers and restaurants while making the valuable business contacts you need. Plus, find holiday gifts from featured Chamber member exhibitors. Admission is $5 and a business card for Chamber members, general admission is $15 and includes hors d’oeuvres and beverages. Exhibit spaces are limited. For more information, contact Edie Swann at email@example.com or (434) 845-5968, Ext. 15.