The Woodstock Town Council established a Tourism Zone in 2020 in order to promote the continued development and success of the town and to increase awareness and support for tourism. Included within this program are the following incentives for qualified tourism related businesses.
New and expanding tourism related businesses are eligible for the Tourism Zone program, provided the business achieves the following:
- Making an investment of at least $15,000 in building improvements and/or depreciable assets (excluding property purchase) over a three-year period.
- Hold a current town business license and be current in all tax and utility bill obligations to the Town and all tax obligations to Shenandoah County.
- Be in compliance with all town ordinance.
The following types of businesses are included within the definition of a qualified tourism business:
- Hospitality (hotels, bed & breakfasts, inns)
- Specialty retail (outdoor/sporting goods, gifts, specialty food and beverage, new clothing and shoes)
- Performing arts (theaters, arcades, assembly halls, event spaces)
- Food services and drinking places (restaurants, bakeries, caterers, wineries, breweries, distilleries)
- Destination and full-service spas
- Scenic and sightseeing transportation
- Recreational goods rental
- Artisan manufacturing
- Arts studios and galleries
** If you have questions about whether your business qualifies, please contact town staff to discuss in more detail. **
Tourism Zone Incentive List:
1. A new water/sewer connection at the cost of one-half of the typical fee or at the cost of a 3/4 inch residential connection, whichever is greater, provided the new water/sewer connection is established within twelve months of being designated a qualified existing or new tourism business by the town manager in accordance with Section 76.3 of this chapter. This connection cost reduction shall also apply to any system development charges applicable to the specific business use type as provided in Chapter 82 of Town Code.
2. There shall be no fee required for any site plan or zoning permit fees applicable to the approved qualified new or existing tourism business, provided that such site plan or zoning permit application is applied within twelve months of being designated a qualified existing or new tourism business by the town manager in accordance with Section 76.3 of Town Code.
3. A professional service grant at the rate of 50% of the design costs, up to a maximum $1,000 to assist the new or existing tourism business with design requirements in order to secure building code approval with Shenandoah County. This grant will be administered by the Town of Woodstock Economic Development Authority and can be received in addition to any other incentives granted through the Economic Development Authority.
4. Priority consideration for sidewalk upgrade partnership program with the town. The business shall secure the cost of materials consistent with the town’s design requirements and the business location shall be prioritized in the Town’s work order program.
To determine if your business location is within the Tourism Zone, check out the below map:
The full Tourism Zone ordinance can be found here:
Shenandoah County also offers Tourism Zone incentives that can also be combined with the above.
Do you have a new or expanding qualified tourism business and would like to apply for the above program? If so, please download the application and schedule a time to meet with Town staff to discuss the process at 540-459-3621.