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Local Heritage Plans

The Blue Ridge National Heritage Area was charged by Congress with developing a Management Plan to help guide the coordination of heritage preservation and development efforts in Western North Carolina for the next ten years.

Community Involvement in Local Heritage Planning

In early 2004, the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area initiated a public planning process in each of the twenty-five counties of the region and in the Cherokee Qualla Boundary to provide input to the Management Plan and to help catalyze local heritage preservation and development efforts. Staff from Western Carolina University and the North Carolina Department of Commerce helped to facilitate the planning process. Volunteer Heritage Councils in the twenty-five counties and the Qualla Boundary completed their heritage development plans in 2005 and have updated them periodically as needed.

The plans provide an overview of local opportunities for heritage preservation and development and identify priorities for future work. The plans represent thousands of hours of volunteer effort on the part of local planning team members.

Local Heritage Plans: Celebrating and Preserving NC History

The local plans provide a foundation for the BRNHA Management Plan. The scope of work in the local plans is commendably ambitious: the plans collectively identify over $780 million in projects. The Blue Ridge National Heritage Area has supported some of these locally identified projects with grants and has supported others by helping to identify funding and partners.

Copies of the local heritage development plans are available for download below.