UNCA submits three candidates for chancellor

July 8, 2014

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

UNC Asheville's Board of Trustees approved three candidates for the school's chancellor position, which will be vacated at the end of the month when Anne Ponder retires. UNC System President Tom Ross is expected to make his recommendation to the UNC Board of Governors, which could approve the new chancellor when it meets Aug.1.

Cider production growing in Western NC

July 7, 2014

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Some Western N.C. apple farmers are benefiting from a boom in cider production, which has increased almost 1,000% in the past few years. Cider makers are looking to expand in North Carolina, which is the seventh-largest apple-producing state in the U.S. 

GOP legislators in Western NC say no shale-gas potential there

August 13, 2014

(The Sylva Herald)

Republican legislators in Western N.C. oppose the state's plan to collect and test rocks in the seven westernmost counties to determine shale-gas potential. Sen. Jim Davis, who co-sponsored the bill that lifted the state's ban on fracking, says it's a waste of money. 

Firework sales pop — but not in North Carolina

June 30, 2014

(Citizen-Times, Asheville)

The migration of Tar Heels to surrounding states to secure fireworks around the Fourth of July holiday underscores the annual tax revenue lost by North Carolina, which has more restrictive laws.

$100M equestrian center to open in Polk County

June 26, 2014

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

A $100 million equestrian center and resort will open in Polk County this summer. Tryon Resort includes five horse rings with 500 horse stables, and future plans include a 6,000-seat outdoor stadium and additional horse rings and stables. Lodging, including a 150-room hotel that will open in 2017, will be operated by Middleburg, Va.-based Salamander Hotels & Resorts.

Asheville airport building new runway

June 24, 2014

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Asheville Regional Airport will begin the first phase of a four-year, $64 million project that includes the replacement of its 50-year-old runway. The Federal Aviation Administration will provide $6.5 million for construction of the new runway and a west-side taxiway. A groundbreaking will be held Aug. 8.

Brad Daugherty to open Asheville restaurant

June 20, 2014

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Black Mountain native Brad Daugherty will open Daugherty's American Kitchen and Drink, a seafood-heavy "casual-upscale" restaurant in south Asheville on July 16. It will be the first restaurant for the former NBA star and NASCAR analyst.

Asheville energy company building 38 megawatts of solar farms across NC

June 19, 2014

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

After receiving a multi-million-dollar investment earlier this year, FLS Energy will begin construction on eight solar farms in North Carolina that will produce 56 million kilowatt hours of electricity per year. Duke Energy will purchase electricity generated from the solar systems.

Oskar Blues to open ranch for mountain biking, events

June 18, 2014

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Oskar Blues Brewery will open a 145-acre farm with mountain-biking trails and music and event space about 8 miles from its Brevard brewery. The REEB Ranch also will have a bike-tour service, on-site lodging and tent camping.

DENR: Duke must fix leaky pipes at coal-ash ponds

June 18, 2014

(The News & Observer, Raleigh)

The state Department of Environment and Natural Resources has ordered Duke Energy to fix leaky pipes at coal-ash ponds at five power plants in Western N.C. The Charlotte utility has until July 17 to submit a schedule for the repairs.

Canadian sock manufacturer to create 205 jobs in Burke County

June 17, 2014

(The Charlotte Observer)

Canada-based Richelieu Legwear will create 205 jobs and invest $16 million by the end of 2018 in a sock-manufacturing plant in Burke County. The company, which currently employs 60 at a plant in Hildebran, will receive up to $2.9 million in state incentives if it meets job-creation targets.

Asheville a Top 10 Foodie City

June 17, 2014

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Livability.com ranked Asheville No. 4 on its list of Top Ten Foodie Cities for 2014. The website cited restaurants' use of products from local farms, the area's 18 craft breweries and James Beard-nominated chefs.

2-megawatt solar farm nears completion in Henderson County

June 16, 2014

(Hendersonville Times-News)

A 13-acre, $5 million solar farm in Henderson County will be generating renewable energy within about 60 days, according to the developer. Meanwhile, two other farms proposed for the county won't be built because of higher-than-expected expenses.

Asheville's Mission Hospital plans $42 million in cuts

July 30, 2014

(Asheville Citizen Times)

Mission Health System, Asheville's biggest employer, will cut costs by $42 million next year under a reorganization plan that could mean layoffs.

Pisgah Inn operator will fight for contract renewal

June 12, 2014

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

The park-concession contract to run the Pisgah Inn on the Blue Ridge Parkway is open for bid. Bruce O'Connell, who gained national attention last year when he defiantly kept the inn open during the federal government shutdown, has operated it for 40 years but now will face competition from larger companies with deep capital.

HomeTrust Bank to acquire 10 BofA branches

June 11, 2014

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Asheville-based HomeTrust Bank will buy 10 Bank of America branches including one in Eden. The other nine are in southwestern Virginia. Charlotte-based Bank of America also will sell six branches, including one in Mount Airy, to Bluefield, Va.-based First Community Bancshares.

Asheville's HomeTrust Bank expands into Virginia

June 10, 2014

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Asheville-based HomeTrust Bank will open a commercial loan office in Roanoke, Va. The community bank, which now has assets of $2.1 billion, recently completed an acquisition of Jefferson Bancshares in Tennessee and plans to acquire Charlotte-based Bank of Commerce. 

Biltmore considers new hotel on estate property

June 10, 2014

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

The Biltmore Company has requested a permit to build a 190-room hotel adjacent to its winery at Antler Village. The Asheville estate is on track to report a record 1.2 million guests at the end of its fiscal year at the end of the month.

Heritage Home to close Morganton plant, cut 87 jobs

June 3, 2014

(Winston-Salem Journal)

Heritage Home Group will close its Drexel Heritage plant in Morganton and will eliminate 87 jobs by July 31. The St. Louis-based company closed furniture plants in Thomasville and High Point earlier this year. The company, which bought assets of Furniture Brands International in November, plans to move its headquarters to the Triad area later this year.

State to test for potential fracking sites in Western NC

June 3, 2014

(Asheville Citizen-Times)

Geologists with the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources will begin testing rock samples from seven Western N.C. counties to determine if there is a potential for deposits of oil or natural gas.