Economic Development Digest 
| Economic Development News
Comcast, MB Link to Present at Gulf Coast Economic Development District Meeting | October 4

Broadband is essential infrastructure. Retaining and attracting businesses, jobs, and population are but a few economic and community benefits. Becoming broadband-ready has multiple drivers, everything from density to terrain must be considered. 

At the next Gulf Coast Economic Development District meeting, Stephanie Loving and Dionne Burnham, senior leaders of the Comcast Houston Development team, will share industry insights for local economic development through broadband. We will also have a presentation by Brain Ligon and Dwight Thomas of MB Link. They will share their insights on developing the first municipal gigabit network in Texas. 

The Gulf Coast Economic Development District meeting will be at 10 a.m. Friday, October 4, at the H-GAC Conference Room B, Second Floor (3555 Timmons Lane, Houston).  

For more information, contact Joshua Owens at 832-681-2613.
AmeriCorps VISTA Volunteer Needed

AmeriCorps logo with Black border and large letter A in the center
The Gulf Coast Economic Development District is seeking an exceptional candidate as an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer. The position will focus on providing technical assistance to organizations and municipalities seeking to drive investment to Opportunity Zones through out the region. 

VISTA volunteers receive a living allowance, health care benefits, and non-competitive federal eligibility at the end of service.   

For more information, contact Joshua Owens at 832-681-2613.
LIVE, Work, and Play: Facilitating Housing for Livable Centers | September 20

Livable Centers - Live Work Play Wordmark
H-GAC's Livable Centers Program seeks to create places where people can Live, Work, and Play. The next Livable Centers workshop, LIVE, Work, and Play: Facilitating Housing for Livable Centers, will focus on the "Live" component --- providing a range of housing choices where residents can make many of their daily trips on foot, by bicycle or transit. The workshop will be from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Friday, September 20, at H-GAC Conference Room B, Second Floor.

Participants can gain insight on how to incorporate housing into planning strategies and learn about the tools available in the region to help promote successful housing development. Attendees will have a chance to join in a conversation with an expert panel to see what it takes to make a housing development "pencil," and we'll answer questions about localized housing strategies.

Registration is requested. For more information, contact Anita Hollmann at 713-993-4587.

Rural and Small Town Downtown Revitalization Summit | October 22

Bringing Back Main Street
H-GAC's Bringing Back Main Street initiative will host a Rural and Small Town Downtown Revitalization Summit from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, October 22, at H-GAC Conference Room B. 
At this half-day event, participants will learn about best practices supporting downtown revitalization, including protecting community character, staying competitive, implementation tools and resources, and tying it all together.

Registration is requested. For more information, contact Cheryl Mergo at 713-993-4520.
Disaster Recovery Program | IEDC 

The International Economic Development Council (IEDC) is placing experienced economic development professionals as volunteers in economic development organizations throughout 
the region that can use expert input doing various
tasks such as: 
  • Attracting inward investment
  • Business outreach, retention and recovery 
  • Community outreach, finance, flood control and mitigation
  • Grant writing, strategic planning, and training/education
Thanks to U.S. Economic Development Administration funding, the volunteers-- who typically come for five days and then do supplementary work remotely--are completely free of charge to communities in the region.
For more information, contact Joshua Owens at 832-681-2613.
TEEX Recovery Courses Accepting Course Requests/Reservations 

Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX) is accepting course requests and reservations. The 12-hour Disaster Recovery Public Assistance course and the four-hour Disaster Recovery for Senior Officials course can be scheduled now. TEEX will come to your community; there is no-cost for this training. For more information, contact Andrew Wenzel, Program Director, at [email protected].
|CEDS Updates
2019 Workforce Report Card

The Gulf Coast Workforce Board and its operating affiliate Workforce Solutions are the public workforce system in the 13-county Houston-Galveston region. In everything that they do, they seek to assure the Gulf Coast region remains a great place to do business, work, and live.

In February 2005, the Board produced the first Workforce Report Card as a tool to gauge the region's competitiveness in relation to similar metropolitan areas across the United States. In this seventh edition, they examine key indicator data and then offer several issues for consideration in context of the future of work.
| Funding Opportunities
Jobs Plus Initiative | October 1, 2019

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Jobs Plus Initiative develops locally-based, job-driven approaches that increase earnings and advance employment outcomes through work readiness, employer linkages, job placement, educational advancement, technology skills, and financial literacy for residents of public housing. The place-based Jobs Plus program addresses poverty among public housing residents by incentivizing and enabling employment through earned income disregards for working residents and a set of services designed to support work including employer linkages, job placement and counseling, educational advancement, and financial counseling. 
Community Facilities (CF) Direct Loan & Grant Program | Ongoing

U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development Community Facilities (CF) Direct Loan & Grant program provides funding to construct, enlarge, or improve essential community facilities in rural areas.  The program has more than $2 billion available for rural communities to build or modernize education, health care, municipal and public safety facilities this fiscal year. 
| Upcoming Developments

Senior-housing community Arella on Jones broke ground last month. The 229-unit at 12840 Jones Road is scheduled to open in 2022.


A new Fort Bend elementary school is going to be built along Lake Olympia Parkway in the Fort Bend Toll Road corridor. The $45 million, 127,544-square-foot project is expected to open in time for the 2021-2022 school year.


The first phase of The Grand at Aliana will be breaking ground soon. The 200,000-square-foot commercial development will be located at the northeast corner of West Airport Boulevard and the Grand Parkway. It is expected to deliver in 2020.


A new apartment complex will be built on the former site of the First Baptist Church of Texas City at 3210 Gulf Freeway. The 234-unit multifamily project is expected to be complete in 2020.

Construction has started on Bayport South, a 642,994-square-foot industrial warehouse on 41.56 acres at 10575 Red Bluff Road. It is expected to be completed in 2020.


Bissonnet Medical Plaza has broken ground at 4460 Bissonnet St. The three-story, 52,000-square-foot medical office project will be completed in 2020.


Layne Crossing is moving to its next phase, which includes two more of the six warehouses planned. The 530,000-foot industrial development is in Greenspoint near I-45 and Beltway 8.

Compiled from reports in Houston Business Journal, Houston Chronicle, and Texas A&M University Real Estate Center
Upcoming Events
October 9-11 | Annual Conference | TEDC | San Antonio 

October 13-16 | Annual Conference | IEDC | Indiana 

October 19-22 | Annual Training Conference | NADO | Nevada

October 25 | Sales Tax Workshop | TEDC | Houston  

November 6-8 | Big State Big Plans | APA | Waco  

December 13 | Sales Tax Workshop | TEDC | Austin 

The Economic Development Digest is published monthly by the

Houston-Galveston Area Council, 3555 Timmons Lane, Suite 120, Houston, TX 77027
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