FREDERICKSBURG, VA – The GO Virginia Region 5 and Region 6 Councils and GO Virginia State Board reviewed and awarded $2,937,163 in statewide competitive funding to support the Launching a Coastal Resilience and Adaptation Economy project led by Virginia Sea Grant, Old Dominion University, and RISE.

GO Virginia is a statewide economic development initiative that provides project-based funds to encourage collaboration among private industry, higher education, and government partners to create higher-paying jobs.

The Coastal Resilience and Adaptation Economy initiative will lay the foundation for a long-term, high-paying industry cluster by supporting business plan competitions and accelerator services. The initiative will form an industry/education consortium to engage with the broader business community about the risks and economic impacts of sea-level rise and build capacity for the adoption of resilient practices.

The project team includes Virginia Sea Grant (VASG, 7-university coalition, Region 6, Lead); RISE (nonprofit, Region 5); Middle Peninsula Chesapeake Bay Public Access Authority (PAA, local government, Region 6); Old Dominion University (ODU, Region 5); and Hampton University (HU, Region 5).

“This project works collaboratively with multiple localities, businesses, and educational partners to help drive innovation in Virginia’s resiliency ecosystem. With coastal Virginia continuing to sink, major assets of Virginia’s economy are at risk of being lost, potentially costing the state billions in solutions. This project supports Region 6’s larger efforts of preserving our coastal communities for regional economic growth,” said Billy Beale, Chairman of the Region 6 Council.

“Region 5 is pleased to be a partner with Region 6 in the Launching a Coastal Resilience and Adaptation Economy project. This project has the potential to be transformational for the Commonwealth of Virginia, by providing an opportunity to shape the brand identity of the State as a global leader in the emerging resilience and adaptation economy. The opportunities include building entrepreneurship and professional services capacity as well as the essential talent pipeline to meet the need,” stated Tom Frantz, Chairman of the Region 5 Council.

The project anticipates outcomes to include an innovation ecosystem and economic industry cluster built on the unique strengths of Virginia’s water landscape. The project will work to advance the capacity of Virginia’s coastal communities to adapt to climate change while creating jobs, bolstering local economies, and positioning Virginia as a global leader. This further advances the Governor’s Executive Order 24 on the coastal master plan framework and §3.F positioning Virginia as a leader in resilience technology.

About the GO Virginia coalition: This project was funded by GO VIRGINIA, a state-funded initiative administered by the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) that strengthens and diversifies Virginia’s economy and fosters the creation of higher-wage jobs in strategic industries. The coalition is comprised of business and community leaders, partners in education and government, and interested Virginians from across the Commonwealth who support regional cooperation on private-sector growth, job creation, and career readiness. Learn more at