City gives $975,000 grant back to TDA

It’s not every day that the city of Asheville returns nearly $1 million in grant money to a funder, but that’s what happened on Jan. 30 at the monthly meeting of the Buncombe County Tourism Development Authority.

The city received a $1 million grant to create “Riverfront Destination 2.0” in 2015, said Pat Kappes, director of public affairs for Explore Asheville, the BCTDA-funded convention and visitors bureau. The package included $25,000 to create a crosswalk and river access on Amboy Road, which have been completed.

But the majority of the award was a $975,000 contribution toward construction of the Beaucatcher Greenway, which the city will now remove from its budget. The 1.2-mile project proposes to create a “wooded corridor below the crest and on the western side of the Beaucatcher Mountain’s ridge, with commanding views of downtown Asheville,” according to the city’s greenways website.