Through the federal Opportunity Zone program, banks, communities, investors, companies, and others may create Opportunity Funds to direct tax-advantaged investments to one of several opportunity zones in the Roanoke Region of Virginia. Roanoke County has established an Opportunity Zone at the intersection of Interstates 81 and 581, the gateway to Roanoke County. The Opportunity zone is bordered on the north by I-81, on the east by I-581, the south by Peters Creek, Cove and Green Ridge Roads and the west by Electric Road (Rt. 419). The average daily traffic count for I-81 is 73,000, 53,000 for I-581, 21,000 for Peters Creek Road and 18,000 for Electric Road.
- The primary benefit of investing in an Opportunity Fund is a temporary deferral of capital gains taxes until December 31, 2026, as long as the Opportunity Zone investment is maintained until that date.
- Secondly, there is a step-up in basis for capital gains reinvested in an Opportunity Fund. The basis is increased by 10 percent if investment in the Opportunity Fund is held by the taxpayer for at least five years and an additional 5 percent if held for at least seven years.
- Lastly, a permanent exclusion of capital gains from the sale or exchange of an investment in an Opportunity Fund applies if the investment is held for at least 10 years.
Roanoke County’s Opportunity Zone
Opportunity Zone Districts
The Opportunity Zone Districts were established by identifying areas with undeveloped or under-developed properties currently zoned for commercial or industrial development, or having a master plan future land use designation as Transition, Core or Principal Industrial.
Primarily a commercial district located at the I-581/Peters Creek Road interchange adjacent to the Roanoke-Blacksburg Regional Airport. This area is ideal for office, hotel, restaurant, multi-family residential and light industrial development. The average daily traffic count for I-581 at the Peters Creek Road interchange is 53,000.
Interstate 81 District
This district extends from the Interstate 81/Electric Road (VA Route 419) interchange (Exit 141) to the south along Electric Road. With an average daily traffic count of 18,000, potential development in this area would be office, multi-family residential and general commercial.
Peters Creek District
This district is situated along the Peters Creek Road commercial corridor close to the Roanoke-Blacksburg Regional Airport. With an average daily traffic count of 21,000, this area is an excellent fit for general commercial, office and multi-family residential development.
Wood Haven District
- This district is primarily for high technology/advanced manufacturing and industrial uses, custom manufacturing, professional office and research and development.
- The Wood Haven District, which is zoned PTD (Planned Technology District), will have a park-like setting that complements surrounding land uses by means of appropriate siting of buildings, controlled access points, attractive and harmonious architecture, effective landscape buffering and scenic view easements.
- This district is highly visible from both I-81 and I-581, with a 73,000 average daily traffic count for I-81 and 53,000 for I-581.
Typically, Roanoke County incentives are direct grants, to a company to offset development costs, or to pay for needed public infrastructure improvements. Examples include:
- Utility Extension / Connection Assistance
- Site Preparation Assistance
- Site Acquisition Assistance
- Expedited Permitting - 5-day turnaround for plan reviews
- Local Permit & Application fee Waivers
- Developer Connections - Will identify developers to deliver a turn key project
- Talent acquisition and resource connections
- Bond financing through the Economic Development Authority