Town of Burnsville
The town of Burnsville lies in the heart of the Black Mountains, the highest mountain range in the eastern United States. Mount Mitchell, the tallest peak east of the Rocky Mountains, is only 10 miles away. The only incorporated town in Yancey County, Burnsville was named in honor of Capt. Otway Burns, statesman and hero in the War of 1812. Its population is 1,700.
Community IssuesThe recent economic downturn has put the pinch on large plants and small businesses alike. Thriving Main Street businesses are separated by empty storefronts. The Avondale Mill, which closed its doors six years ago, sits vacant on the west side of town.
The construction industry, which replaced manufacturing as the town’s largest employment sector in 2006, suffered when the housing bubble burst. The market for new home construction is less than half of what it was two years ago. The county’s unemployment rate, which peaked at 14.5 percent in February 2009, dropped slightly to 12.6 percent in March 2010.
Burnsville also has significant problems with its water and sewer infrastructure. Its aging wastewater treatment plant has contributed to the contamination of the nearby Cane River.
Among the assets Burnsville may build on are U.S. 19E, which could be used to bring visitors and customers for retail businesses. In addition, local organizations are helping improve signage and trails to boost recreational opportunities in the area. Burnsville already is participating in the N.C. Department of Commerce’s 21st Century Communities and Small Town Main Street programs.
Theresa Coletta, Mayor
Insert Image Label Here-->