The future is bright for Lincoln. Last summer, the Lincoln Chamber of Commerce (lcoc.com/economic-strategy), two top consulting firms, a 42-member steering committee and 3,500 community members started the 6-month process of outlining a vision for Lincoln’s economic future and how to achieve it. I was honored to present the plan to Chamber membership at our Annual Meeting in February and am looking forward to working with our community partners to build pathways that collaboratively execute on the impactful initiatives outlined in this plan.
Led by nationally recognized consultants from Broad Ripple Strategies and DMOProz, the Vitality Lincoln steering committee identified six areas of focus that guide the plan, including:
- A detailed focus on diverse talent and ability to better attract, retain and grow companies by providing a sustainable base of trained talent. As a top challenge for our local business community, Vitality Lincoln outlines new opportunities to connect people with Lincoln’s workforce and educational programs by establishing a coordinated career pathway system. A crucial part of this area also includes a heightened support of the expansion of local early childhood education and care capacity, a growing challenge among members of our workforce.
- The development of distinctive destination assets and facilities to attract visitors and events to Lincoln, including plans for a downtown convention center, a reimagined Lincoln-based music festival and the creation of dynamic, connected mixed-use activity hubs across the community. Learn more about the Downtown Lincoln Convention Center Feasibility Study commissioned by a coalition of organizations led by Visit Lincoln – a division of the Lincoln Chamber, Downtown Lincoln Association and Lincoln Rotary Club 14 at lincoln.org/downtown-lincoln-convention-center-feasibility.
- The rollout of new targeted economic development initiatives that capitalize on Lincoln’s unique assets. By implementing an integrated, multifaceted business recruitment program and creating a marketing strategy for the Interstate 80 corridor connecting Lincoln to Omaha, Lincoln will be a more competitive option when recruiting new projects to Lincoln.
- A commitment to providing the land and infrastructure necessary to accelerate the vibrant and balanced growth of our community. This includes creating an accelerated infrastructure investment task force, optimizing policies to address affordable housing challenges and ongoing discussions about the construction of the East Beltway, which will help accelerate growth.
- Position Lincoln as a nationally recognized hub for starting and scaling job-and-wealth-creating business by elevating our dynamic entrepreneurial systems and support. By enhancing the local awareness of Lincoln’s entrepreneurial ecosystem and improving connectivity, Lincoln will experience an increase of diverse talent in our pipeline.
- We have to tell our story to the world. A heightened emphasis on developing compelling image and awareness campaigns will creatively tell the story of Lincoln’s competitive advantages and opportunities.
Read the full plan at lcoc.com/economic-strategy. Thank you to the business leaders and community members who continue to play a crucial role in the ongoing economic vitality of our community as we take this important step forward.