What Kind of Economic Growth should Charlottesville Attract?

I’ve been watching the Thomas Jefferson Partnership for Economic Development this morning,

thanks to @BradRamsey for the tweets –

… and really, I was looking for an excuse to try out embedding tweets.

If the Charlottesville area is going to grow* intelligently, we need to bring in good businesses. But what kind? What segments are we targeting? Government contractors? Tech? Bio-tech (which branch? “Bio-tech” is much too broad, methinks)

* By “grow” I don’t mean “sprawl” I mean good, vibrant, beneficial growth.

What types of economic development should Charlottesville (“Charlottesville” meaning Charlottesville, Albemarle, Fluvanna, Greene, Nelson, Louisa) seek to attract?

#tjp (Thomas Jefferson Partnership for Economic Development): 30% of albemarle-charlottesville workforce commutes into the MSAless than a minute ago via txt

#tjp: “our local economy is forcing the middle class to get more education or drive elsewhere for work, is that the economy we want”less than a minute ago via txt

#tjp: “all of our job growth is coming from health, education, etc, government jobs that limit the number of people paying taxes”less than a minute ago via txt

#tjp: we need to “strategically grow & attract capital intensive, private sector employers that provide career ladder ops for our residents”less than a minute ago via txt

#tjp “message to supervisors today will be – this is all about smart ways to improve tax revenue”less than a minute ago via txt

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  1. jennifer May 5, 2010 at 08:18

    This is such an important topic. I would like to see more discussion about the type of economic development we should have in our community. I recently heard an interesting clip by our local public radio station on manufacturing and rural communities. The bottom line was the towns who want to replace these now empty manufacturing plants with similar industry or similarly sized employers are not being creative enough, those manufacturing plants are few and far between.
    I want our community to be a research community- not just for medical research, but also defense and other stable industry research. If we start at research, manufacturing and other byproducts of research will grow here too. The goal being a diversified economy of relatively high paying jobs.
    I dont think relying on research entirely is a good plan since we have plenty of folks who are not PhDs who need jobs, that will have to be another comment.

    1. Jim May 6, 2010 at 05:43

      Jennifer – I absolutely agree.

      A couple of questions about the information, though –

      – Where are the workers coming from?
      – Where are they going?
      – What industries are we talking about?


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