The Roanoke Region includes two enterprise zones that offer incentives for business locations, expansions, and development. Businesses and/or property owners in a zone, and that meet requirements, are eligible for state and local grants based on job creation and/or investment in real property.  

State Incentives

Two grant-based incentives are available from the Commonwealth of Virginia: job creation grants and real property investment grants. For more information on each grant’s specific criteria, please see the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Enterprise Zone Grant summary.

Job Creation Grants are based on:

  • Permanent full time job creation over a four-job threshold, exceeding wage thresholds, and making health benefits available.
  • The amount of the grant will be based on the wages paid for grant-eligible positions in eligible industries.

Real Property Investment Grants are based on:

  • Investments made to a commercial, industrial, or mixed use building or facility;
  • An investment greater than $100,000 for rehabilitation projects. Grants issued for up to 20 percent of anything spent in excess of $100,000.
  • An investment of greater than $500,000 for new construction.  Grants issued for up to 20 percent of anything spent in excess of $500,000.
  • Grants capped at $100,000 per building or facility for investments less than $5 million, and $200,000 for investments of $5 million or more.

Local Incentives

City of Roanoke Enterprise Zone

  • Job Grants: Businesses taking advantage of job training assistance from the Virginia Department of Business Assistance also may be eligible for job training grants from the City of Roanoke.
  • Partial Real Estate Tax Exemption of Rehabilitated Buildings: Available when rehabilitation increases the assessed value of an existing commercial, industrial or commercial mixed-use property.
  • Facade Grant Program: Rebates one third of the cost of façade renovations up to $25,000.
  • Development Fees Rebates: Available in proportion to the amount of investment.
  • Water, Fire, Sewer Hookup Fees Rebates:  Based on the amount of overall investment.
  • Business Security Grant: By participating in the Roanoke Police Department Star City Business Watch program, businesses may receive up to $500 to incorporate police-recommended security measures.
  • Neighborhood and Parks Grant: Available to neighborhood organizations for improving gateway features, signage, or overall beautification efforts.  

Alleghany Highlands Enterprise Zone   

  • Utility Consumer Tax Reduction: A 70 percent reduction in the first year, 40 percent for Year 2, and 20 percent for Year 3.
  • Business License Tax Reduction: A 70 percent reduction in the first year, 40 percent for Year 2, and 20 percent for Year 3.
  • Real Estate Tax Reduction: A 70 percent reduction in the first year, 40 percent for Year 2, and 20 percent for Year 3.
  • Machinery and Tools Tax Reduction: A 70 percent reduction in the first year, 40 percent for Year 2, and 20 percent for Year 3.
  • Building Permit Fee Reimbursement: A payment equal to the amount of the building permit fees.