Built some 165 years ago, the Western & Atlantic railroad depot was once a hub of activity in Tunnel Hill.
But the depot closed decades ago, and the building has been unoccupied for several years. Now, Tunnel Hill city officials want to change that. They’d like to see it developed into a community center, and the Northwest Georgia Regional Commission has applied for a $30,000 grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission on their behalf.
“The grant is to develop a preservation and use plan,” said Tunnel Hill City Manager Blake Griffin. “What I understand that to mean is an architectural and engineering plan. We’ve had an assessment done. But that just told us what problems there are with the building. Now, we need a plan for how we are going to fix it up.”
Griffin confirmed that the grant application has passed the first stage of scrutiny.
“As I understand it, that means the state has approved it and forwarded it on to the federal government,” he said.
Griffin says he expects the final decision will be made this summer, and if the grant is approved, the city would receive the grant no earlier than this fall.
The grant calls for a $15,000 local match, but ...