Friday, October 13, 2006

Regional Focus

I’m increasingly seeing the growth and importance of a more regional approach to economic development. Too many towns and groups try to stay in a “silo-mentality” rather than reaching out to the natural partners that they should have.

Columbus, IN is one of the towns that I talk about in my presentations because of what they did to shape a special vision for their community with their special architectural focus, which has resulted in them being ranked the 6th most architecturally significant city in the entire USA.

Columbus is now taking a visionary approach to ED, joining eight local and regional groups together into a federation focused upon economic development. The new group, called the Columbus Area Economic Growth Council, will have board members from each of the eight organizations.

Mayor Fred Armstrong said of the new organization, “Collaboration, collaboration, collaboration. When organizations collaborate, pool resources and form partnerships with education, workforce training, and economic development agencies, we can better compete globally.”

The council has already secured nearly almost $1 million in grants for job training in its first month of existence.

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