Appomattox, VA - One section of Appomattox may soon undergo a beautification project to encourage the flow of tourists not only to the park and museum, but into town as well. Appomattox has hired a private consulting firm to study the idea.
Many business owners in the area are in favor of it because the way the road is set up now, many visitors can see the main attractions without ever going into town. The county planner says that beautifying the area could bring more foot traffic to small businesses.
"Anything we can do to bring more people to Appomattox would be wonderful," said Sharon Cantrell, owner of Appomattox Trading Post.
When the Museum of the Confederacy opened, Cantrell saw a slight increase in business.
"It seems like it brought a few more people down this way," she said.
But she wouldn't mind seeing more.
"I'd like to see them do anything that would help people in Appomattox. I know there's a lot of people out of work," said Cantrell.
According to County Planner Johnnie Roark, the goal of the whole plan is to get tourists over the bridge and into town because currently visitors of the park and museum are getting off 460 and jumping right back on it, never passing through the town.
"That's how we come, 460. Yeah that's how we do it," said Cheryl Gain, visitor at the Museum of the Confederacy.
Gain brought her mom to see the Museum of the Confederacy.
"I love it, anything with history," said Gain.
The purpose of the project is to draw people like Cheryl into town. The study stretches from the intersection at Farmers Bank all the way out to the National Park. Suggestions have already been made to add landscaping, benches and a pathway for bicyclists and pedestrians.
"I think it would be a great idea," said Gain.
"Anything bringing in more customers for small businesses would be great," said Cantrell.
The study is expected to be complete by May. At that point, the town and county will look into how to fund the project, possibly through state and federal grants.