Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Intercity Visit 2019: October 2 - 4


Expedition Montgomery Is Set to Engage Topeka's Community Leaders, Influencers and Activists
As we get closer to Expedition Montgomery, the GTP team is putting together a thought provoking agenda. Some of the major topics and highlights so far include in-depth discussions with Montgomery officials on their collaboration with Market Street consultants to create three community-wide plans similar to Momentum 2022. The topic of what worked, what didn’t work and more will be continuously examined throughout the trip, which will prove especially relevant as Topeka quickly approaches the strategy's halfway point.

Attendees will also hear from the Chief of Police on their SMART Watch program designed to combat crime, from city officials on how the city won the SMART CITY Challenge just last year, which was a combined initiative to connect and leverage the communities unique technology assets, and from educators on how the community has rallied to go from a city with some of the lowest preforming nationally known schools to having one the best Magnet schools in the country.

Sessions are also coming together that will see GTP leadership break out according to the five pillars of Momentum 2022 for afternoon tours relevant to the issues facing Topeka today: from innovation campuses, to schools, to Montgomery’s strong civil rights tourism, to driving neighborhood tours and discussions.

Even with a high-level agenda, the GTP has still found ways to allow for fun and networking within the group. Each day will conclude with a riverboat cruise and a superb dining experience at one of Montgomery's excellent local restaurants, before we call it a night and make our way back to the Renaissance Hotel.

More information here.



      To read the full article email Alexia Eanes.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Economic Incubators Inc. has served Collier County well

By Penny Taylor, Collier County Commission District 4

It is not often, in the history of a community that private citizens join with government to lay the foundation for profound change.

That is what happened in 2014 when the Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce brought Market Street Services, a highly respected company providing community, workforce and economic development strategic planning services to Collier County. The steering committee — 50 plus folks strong — the Board of County Commissioners and the Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce worked with Market Street to create a report on the economic future of Collier County. Market Street’s task was to provide an assessment of our competitiveness for economic growth and diversity.

One of the strategic recommendations in the report is to expand the entrepreneurial capacity of Collier County. In response, the Naples Accelerator (accelerator) and the Immokalee Incubator (incubator) were created, and managed by, Economic Incubators, Inc. (EII). The County funded both. The Board of EII was composed of highly respected and influential business leaders who understood the importance of entrepreneurial activity and took the risk and the time to bring this key economic element to Collier County.


To read the full article click here or email Alexia Eanes.

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Our View: Regional cooperation is the key to bringing new jobs to our area

By: Washington County News

When we say we need more economic development, that’s just sort of a bureaucratic way of saying we need more jobs.

It’s kind of like a statement we heard on a TV show recently, where a boss told an employee, “When someone comes into the hardware store looking for a quarter-inch drill bit, what they’re saying isn’t that they need a drill bit. What they’re really saying is that they need a quarter-inch hole.”

And, as anyone involved in economic and community development knows, the goal is to create new jobs (preferably ones that provide living wages) at least as fast as the old jobs are slipping away.

Losing jobs — and not having enough new ones to replace them — will eventually spell death for a community, so it’s not only prudent to focus on job recruitment, it’s an absolute necessity to ensure survival.

And when we engage in economic development activities, sometimes we must put city, county and state borders aside and concentrate on the region as a whole.

That’s the message that about 20 community and business leaders from both of the Bristols; Sullivan County, Tennessee; and Washington County, Virginia, heard last week during a forum at the Bristol Chamber of Commerce. The speaker was Mac Holladay, founder and CEO of Market Street Services, an Atlanta-based economic and community development consulting firm.


To read the full article click here or email Alexia Eanes.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Leaders discuss regional economic development

By David McGee, Bristol Herald Courier

BRISTOL, Tenn. — Successful economic development is blind to invisible boundaries, a consultant told local city and county leaders Tuesday.

Mac Holladay, founder and CEO of Market Street Services, an Atlanta-based economic and community development consulting firm, spoke to a group of about 20 community and business leaders from both Bristols, Sullivan County and Washington County, Virginia, at the Bristol Chamber of Commerce.

“It’s clearly communication and understanding the labor shed knows no boundaries. They don’t care where the city limits are or where the state line is either,” Holladay said after the 90-minute forum. “Neither does the quality of education. Neither does the quality of place because what you want is as many good choices as you can get. You want different places of different sizes to be of quality.”

Holladay said the most attractive areas for businesses have quality education, a prepared workforce and good quality of life. By contrast, he cited rural areas where hospitals have closed, describing those areas as economically “done” because health care is a key, basic consideration. Having no hospital makes it more difficult to attract new employers or families, he added.

He also said everyone involved needs to appreciate when another locality lands a business or industry.


To read the full article click here or email Alexia Eanes.

Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Momentum Grows in Topeka Via Holistic Economic Development Plan

By Kristin Hiller

A renaissance is underway in Topeka, Kansas, with undeniable momentum as new commercial, industrial and residential developments emerge citywide.

The year 2015 was pivotal with a $9.4 million public-private investment in infrastructure and amenities along Kansas Avenue downtown. Local investors have purchased more than 25 buildings on the avenue for gradual restoration into thriving businesses like Iron Rail Brewing, The Pennant, Cyrus Hotel and Kansas Avenue Lofts.

The 45,000-square-foot Evergy Plaza is slated to open in March 2020 in the shadow of the Kansas Statehouse. A crowning jewel of downtown development, the plaza will feature a 50-foot performance stage, digital screen, programmable fountains, fireplaces and an ice skating rink during the winter.

According to a recent market study, growth in the Capital City shows no signs of slowing down. St. Louis-based Development Strategies says downtown could support expansion over the next decade to include 900 new or rehabilitated housing units, 300,000 square feet of new or rehabilitated office space, 690,000 square feet of retail space and at least 200 more hotel rooms.


To read the full article click here or email Alexia Eanes.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Study finds Madison area needs national partnerships to thrive

By Judy Newman

The Madison area is in a lot better shape economically than most other metropolitan areas of the U.S., but to propel the region into a top-echelon position it will take a lot more collaboration, education, investment and promotion, according to a new study.

That could include forming entrepreneurial partnerships with groups as far away as Ann Arbor, Michigan or Pittsburgh, creating a food distribution center that would serve several states, or becoming a hub for industrial hemp.

One of the most important steps will be to find a way to make broadband available to everyone in the region, the study says.

The Madison area has the most diverse economy in the nation and is among leaders in the growth of technology jobs but it is far behind “top U.S. investment hubs such as Austin, Texas, Raleigh, North Carolina, or Portland, Oregon,” according to Advance Now 2.0.


To read the full article click here or email Alexia Eanes.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Strategy for future on show for public; Leaders hoping residents will engage with implementation process

Special to The Gazette
May 12, 2019


The public is invited to the rollout of the Halifax County Community Strategic Plan at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, May 22, at The Prizery when members of the steering committee will introduce key initiatives and tactical recommendations.

The community is invited to attend to learn more about the plan and how to get involved in the implementation process.

“A plan is only valuable when it is implemented,” said Chamber President Mitzi McCormick. “A realistic work plan will ensure that the Community Strategic Plan is activated and sustainable for the next five years and beyond.”

Halifax County began the process of carrying out a community-driven strategic planning initiative on Monday, Oct. 15. Public, private and non-profit leaders in Halifax County have come together around a holistic community and economic development initiative that will help the community achieve a more prosperous and successful future...



To read the full article click here or email Alexia Eanes.