With new businesses, local economy grows - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

With new businesses, local economy grows

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New businesses and restaurants are popping up in Beckley and surrounding areas.

You've probably noticed the brand new strip on Eisenhower Drive next to Sheetz in Beckley. After new restaurants Olive Garden and Buffalo Wild Wings became a hit, locals are welcoming these newcomers with open arms.

"Oh yes, I'll be first in line when Panera opens. I've never been there, but I'm very excited about it coming here, I've heard great things about it," Beckley resident Sue Kuchta said.

"I think Buffalo Wild Wings is wonderful. Olive Garden was a good addition and Cheddar's was a wonderful addition as well. I'm looking forward to visiting Panera Bread and Memphis right over here," Paul Thurbon, area resident told us.

While the Boy Scout Jamboree should bring in a larger crowd to the area and to local businesses, the Summit Bechtel Reserve will serve as a permanent home to a steady flow of visitors.

"The success of the Boy Scouts, which will of course be amplified in two years when the World Jamboree comes, will probably motivate a lot of them to take a close look to the area," Bob Cannon, Chief Code Enforcement Officer told 59News.

"And then with the Boy Scouts coming into town, we are in great shape," added Kuchta.

So just will these new businesses open?

"The building itself has been progressing as it should be. The back bridge was completed already so they have a 2nd way out of there. The other 3 are almost complete. Once we sign off on the building completion, they'll be ready to go. Then they'll operate on their own time schedule as to exactly when they'll open," Cannon said.

"Not only are locals excited to shop and dine in these new venues, but Cannon said businesses are just as happy to be here in Southern West Virginia.

"We have obviously the advantages we already know. Two interstates, a lot of retail growth, a medical center, financial resources and an airport," added Cannon.

Panera Bread is slated to open mid-August and is currently hiring.