Russell County is considered “The Heart of Southwest Virginia,” positioned between Virginia’s coal-producing counties and the dynamic Tri-Cities region, which includes the twin cities of Bristol, VA/TN, and Kingsport and Johnson City, both in Northeast Tennessee.
The county is just a 45-minute drive from Tri-Cities Regional Airport (Blountville, Tenn.); 150 miles west of Roanoke and 290 miles west of Richmond, the state capital. U.S. Routes 19 and 58 are four-lane highways that provide easy access to Interstates 81 and 77. Norfolk Southern and CSX offer rail transportation to the county.
Geared for business growth, the area is known for delivering skilled workers and aptly negotiating business-friendly incentives for companies. Businesses considering coming to Russell County may be eligible for assistance from the Virginia Coalfield Economic Development Authority and/or Virginia Tobacco Indemnification and Community Revitalization Commission.
The county also has an excellent fiber-optic broadband infrastructure that has redundancy through BVU Authority and Verizon. The county also has redundant electricity through Appalachian Power.
The Southwest Virginia Technology Development Center (in Lebanon) provides opportunities for employee training, and a new governmental center offers more than 8,000 square feet of space for training, meetings and social events.
Nature enthusiasts will particularly enjoy visiting or living in Russell County. Going eastward, there’s the Clinch Mountain Wildlife Area, which provides ample opportunities for hunting and trout fishing. There’s also the 90-acre Pinnacle Natural Area, which offers picnicking, a suspension footbridge over Big Cedar Creek, and four miles of hiking trails. Fishing is allowed within the preserve along Big Cedar Creek and the Clinch River.
Seasonal cultural activities include the Russell County Fair and Horse Show, Honaker Redbud Festival and Fall Festival at Southwest Virginia Community College. Within a short drive, there’s also the world-famous Barter Theatre (Abingdon, Va.) and Bristol Motor Speedway (Bristol, Tenn.).