Granville County Government is applying for $300,000 in funding from the N.C. Department of Commerce to help bring the former Granville Furniture building, located at 117 Main Street in Oxford, to standards needed to operate Strong Arm Baking. Work includes, but is not limited to, electrical, plumbing, HVAC, sprinklers, painting, exhaust doors, ceiling, flooring, tile, countertops, stairs, framing, etc. The requested funding will assist with costs of these renovations, as well as equipment and an environmental review.
Once awarded, the state will forward funds to the County, who will then loan the money to Strong Arm Baking for the work needed to complete the project. The loan is forgivable if the company meets the requirement of creating nineteen (19) jobs, with at least 60 percent of the jobs going to persons residing in low- to moderate-income housing.
A public hearing was held during the Aug. 5 meeting of the Granville County Board of Commissioners. At this meeting, Commissioners approved proceeding with this grant. Although the State will be awarding the funds, they are actually federal funds administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), which requires that grantees have certain planning documents in place throughout the duration of the project. Though this is not a housing project, some of the required documents are housing in nature. These documents were approved during the Oct. 21 meeting of the Granville County Board of Commissioners so that the grant process can continue.
The downtown building, which has been vacant until purchased by Strong Arm, was originally constructed in the 1890s.