At a meeting of the Economic Development Committee at the Greater New Haven (CT) Chamber on March 11th, we were grappling with the impacts of COVID-19, before the first US death. In just 18 days later there have been over 2,000 deaths plus tens of thousands of infected people. Communities are shutting everything down, businesses are closing, over 100,000 people in CT have filed for unemployment insurance and our community businesses including local and regional sectors are devastated, and that’s in little over a 6+ weeks! Nobody knows when things will turn around, but most agree it won’t be anytime soon.
Summer in Hamden is a great time to relax at the Canal Crossing at Whitneyville West, but for its staff it has been their busiest, renting new units coming online. Since its opening in August of 2017, the owners have completed four of the seven buildings, with the final completion set for early 2020. Currently at a 100% occupancy rate for the first four buildings, residents have enjoyed the long list of perks the Canal Crossing offers, including air conditioning, a walk in closest, an in-unit washer and dryer, and a private balcony or patio.
DECA success for Hamden High leaves one to consider: What’s next for the town’s brightest young business minds?
We never have enough time for it, everyone has a different opinion about what it is, but we all know it takes 70-80% of our time each week. It isn’t always splashy, but economic developers know it is the time best spent in our communities. I am talking about business retention.
Despite the history and success of the Magic Mile with its regional and national box stores and restaurants, there are many unique and successful businesses that provide important and interesting services, employ a lot of people and support families and the communities in where they are located.
I was raking my leaves and an SUV pulled up and a woman asked me what stores were going into a particular property. I knew it wasn’t going to be retail. I explained this but she couldn't understand why not a store, and then she suggested several options that I know were not going to happen. When I would not divulge my information, she was frustrated that I wouldn't share confidential information.
After she drove away, I thought that if you ask 10 Hamden residents what economic development was, you might get a similar answer; that our job is to “bring stores to Hamden.” We not only recruit new businesses but more importantly, help to retain our current businesses by offering services and incentives to expand right here.
What do you think about when you look at a package of mozzarella cheese? Do you think about economic development? No, you probably think about lasagna or pizza! This kind of cheese and many others are manufactured at Liuzzi Cheese in Hamden, CT and sold in 31 states. Because of this demand, many people have jobs to make, sell and distribute the cheese as well as other products.
Technology has forever changed the local, state and national economy. It affects retail trade, services that we buy and products that we have come to know.