WUFT News

Alachua County To Mirror Innovation Hub

By on April 18th, 2014
Business owners from across Alachua County discuss the Economic Development Advisory Committee’s strategic plan.

Monica Kelly / WUFT News

Business owners from across Alachua County discuss the Economic Development Advisory Committee’s strategic plan.

A partnership between the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce and the county commission’s Economic Development Advisory Committee (EDAC)  wants to create the same business opportunities Innovation Gainesville brought to the city in 2010.

A task force met with local business owners on April 16 at a business and economic development workshop to begin work on promoting growth within the county.

Kamal Latham, vice president of public policy at the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce, said the workshop was a success.

At the meeting, businesses reviewed a 34-point plan to improve the EDAC’s strategy, which included getting new businesses excited to move to the county.

Marty Goodkind, owner of Sunbelt Moving and Delivery Inc., said keeping new businesses here long enough to then bring other companies in is important.

“How do we get the fish on the line?” Goodkind said. “How do we keep them on the line — reel the fish into the boat?”

Goodkind said he believes the combined effort of the chamber, the city and the University of Florida is what brought companies like Mindtree, a Fortune 500 information technology company, to Gainesville.

Most of the Innovation Gainesville initiative is concentrated in the downtown area of the city, a place seen as ideal for startup technology and health industries. But now the county wants to spur business in its rural areas.

“Diversity means opportunity,” Goodkind said. “Alachua has the leverage to become a global hub for both technological and agricultural innovation.”

Dave Ferro, a member of the EDAC, said the plan was created earlier this year. It has not started yet.

Goodkind said the county should make its own innovation hub because the rest of the county reaps little benefit from Gainesville’s growth.

For instance, if a building is located on Southwest 2nd Avenue, part of the money goes to the city, while only a small portion goes to the county.

Although it may compete with the city, Ferro said he believes making the county an innovation hub as well will benefit everyone.

“With good news at both the city and the county level, we are trying to improve the quality of life in the community,” Ferro said.


This entry was posted in Business and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.
  • Murph Johnston

    Those things which become available to most of us only become so because they were first the luxury of a few who could afford to try them.

 

More Stories in Business

Steamers

Steamers Makes A Comeback, Opening In Bo Diddley Plaza

Four years after it closed, Steamers restaurant is back again with a new location. Owner Artie Guy is bringing the restaurant back to Gainesville in Bo Diddley Plaza. Set for an opening in May, the dining place will be in a central hub amid plaza renovations.


Foresight Construction Group employees attend a trade fair sponsored by the Central and North Florida Minority Supplier Development Council. From left to right, Melissa Segarra, marketing director, Juan Segarra, president and Maritza Rovira-Forino, minority business manager.

Gainesville Responds to Low Grades on NAACP Report Card

The City of Gainesville’s Equal Opportunity Committee met last Tuesday to continue to discuss a report card that indicated minorities are underrepresented in the city government.


Personal liaison Daniel Araque delivers groceries to a Gainesville resident. Lazy Delivery offers delivery from any brick and mortar stores in the area within two hours.

Three Unlikely Business Owners Expand Gainesville Company To Tallahassee

Manuel Zelaya, his brother Daniel and their longtime friend Marc Charbel are in their mid-twenties and co-founders of Lazy Delivery, a business that delivers groceries and other items from physical stores to area residents. They are expanding their business to Tallahassee later this month.


Wendy Newman, co-owner of The Talented Cookie Company, ices an order of cookies decorated to look like limes. The Talented Cookie Company is moving into The Corner next month.

Local Entrepreneurs Unite To Create High Springs Hangout

Two couples combine four businesses to make one large hangout for High Springs. The opening of The Corner is scheduled for next month.


Luke Kemper, the owner of Swamp Head Brewery, shares a laugh over a beer with tactical manager Brandon Nappy. The brewery creates many seasonable beers but has found success from the first original five beers, which are available year round.

Swamp Head Becomes First Solar-Powered Brewery In Florida

Swamp Head Brewery has moved to a new location and installed solar panels, becoming the first solar-powered brewery in Florida. Their goal has always been to become more sustainable, and they have taken other initiatives such as buying land for preservation and aiding in conservation efforts to do so.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Underwriting Payments