Business Development

Rocky Mount’s historic downtown offers a mix of retail, antique stores, restaurants, and service businesses, reflecting the town’s diversity, strong sense of community, and ideal geographic setting.

Why Downtown Rocky Mount?

Downtown Rocky Mount fosters creative innovation. Rocky Mount’s cultivation of a creative economy has become a dominant economic driver in northeastern North Carolina and has positioned Rocky Mount at the forefront of an economic development movement that is receiving national attention.

Rocky Mount’s Downtown Development Office supports all current and future business ventures by providing resources and connecting investors and entrepreneurs to the information they need to be successful. Whether you’re looking for available office or retail space, financial resources, assistance with your business plan; or have questions regarding permits, zoning or codes, the following links will help you get started.


Whether you’re new to the area, or new to the business world, starting a business can be intimidating, but we’ve got you covered! Find out about grant opportunities, available properties downtown, historic tax credits and more!
Learn more


All properties within downtown are zoned residential over retail (B4), and certain areas of downtown are impacted by overlay districts, such as the Douglas Block Overlay District and the Historic Preservation Overlay District.
Learn more about zoning regulations downtown.

Market Study

The City of Rocky Mount Trade Area Demographic Report, completed in April 2015, describes basic demographic information about the City of Rocky Mount. Here you will find data about the population, housing, income, business information, etc.
View report

Recent Projects

The City and other local partners have completed several improvement projects over the past several years in the Downtown area, and continue to pursue more projects to make Downtown Rocky Mount the ideal location for community activity. The projects completed in the last several years include:

  • Douglas Block Revitalization, a project near and dear to the Rocky Mount community, resulted in the renovation of multiple buildings that span across 2 blocks within downtown. Originally known as the African American business district prior to integration, bringing the Douglas Block back to life has created multiple residential and retail occupant options in a historically significant area in Rocky Mount.
  • Rocky Mount Event Center, an indoor sports and event center facility located beside the recently updated Douglas Block. A space for the community to house events such as trade shows, conferences, and weddings. The possibilities are endless with this adaptable space.
  • Edgecombe Community College Biotechnology Center and Medical Simulation Center, a 45,000 square foot facility that opened in January 2016, houses 14 of the 22 college’s health sciences programs. The cornerstone of this new development is the hospital environment simulator that has made the programs offered in this facility destinations programs, bringing students, faculty and staff into downtown on a daily basis.
  • Monk to Mill Trail is a conceptual urban trail and green way that will serve as a pedestrian and cyclists friendly thoroughfare through downtown. This development will also connect downtown to other parks and trails throughout the city.

Available Properties

Now that you know that Rocky Mount is the place for you and your business, please check out the available properties to find the perfect location for you and your business. View available properties.

Chamber of Commerce

The Rocky Mount Chamber of Commerce is an excellent source of information about what’s going on in Rocky Mount, and potential resources to be used in your new business. You can view the Chamber of Commerce website here.

Historic Preservation Committee (HPC)

Downtown Rocky Mount is primarily housed within the Central City Historic District, therefore modifications made to any structure or that is registered with the National Register of Historic Places must be approved by the Rocky Mount HPC. You can find more information about this committee here.

The Rocky Mount HPC is the lead authority in regards to: compiling an inventory of significant properties; designating landmarks and historic districts; promoting preservation efforts; and reviewing Certificate of Appropriateness (COA) proposals for alterations, demolitions, or new construction within historic districts, or of designated landmarks.

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