This article, originally published by Al Zucaro on BocaWatch.org, is preserved for historical purposes by Massive Impressions Online Marketing in Boca Raton.
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Hey Economic development people…what are you waiting for?
Boca Raton is positioned to be the International Commerce Capital of Palm Beach County. No other municipality has advanced or claimed this platform; no other municipality has a Customs Facility on its in-town airport capable of landing most any private corporate jet that flies; no other municipality has comparably demonstrated international attraction like the Brazilian Fest; and no other municipality has international education programs from grade school to post graduate.
What baffles me is why I am unaware of any economic development efforts directed to attract this audience?
Boca Raton sure has enough available commercial space to accommodate any identified demand….but no, instead of seeking new business opportunity, leadership has opted to identify itself simply as a ‘bedroom’ community with most new land development efforts only attracting residential housing, the low hanging fruit, with little creativity and even less economic development promise.
This past week the Palm Beach Post reported that the City of West Palm Beach has been positioning itself as the financial capital of Palm Beach County. Working with the Business Development Board, the city is marketing itself as a relocation opportunity for northeast financial entities needing 8 to 10, 000 square feet office space. A dear friend of mine in the commercial office building business described his business as “off the charts” at dinner this weekend. Two major land owners/investors are planning hundreds of thousands of commercial space to come out of the ground in the next 12 to 18 months….
Certainly no comparable story can be told about the Boca Raton economic development efforts….Why?
Just 45 miles south on I-95 is perhaps the 3rd or 4th largest diplomatic community in all the United States. There are Foreign Diplomatic Posts and Consulates for most major countries around the globe there. These posts are assigned the responsibility of developing business and cultural interests for their countries in the southeast U.S. and Caribbean. A mere forty miles south and I would venture to guess that little if any efforts have been made by our elected officials, our economic development officials and our Chamber of Commerce to attract the diplomat and their attaches to visit Boca Raton to realize our potential….I would love to be proven wrong!!!
To keep this short, the World Trade Center Miami in cooperation with UPS has announced an incredible program worth your attention. This is an easy download… See Trade Alert video below:
I end this comment in the same way I began it….
BOCA RATON IS POSTIONED TO BE THE INTERNATIONAL COMMERCE CAPITAL OF PALM BEACH COUNTY….What are you waiting for????
Well said. Also note that Boca has a major advantage vs. WPB: proximity to a major international airport, FLL. For example, Emirates is starting nonstop service to FLL from Dubai and there are numerous flights from Europe and Latin America to FLL. PBI, on the other hand, has no such service (not even nonstops to California).
“Trade follows travel” Let’s exploit our “home” commercial airport by reaching out to foreign corporate and real estate investors.
Thanks, but no thank you. The downtown develop mentioned is already a colossal failure of foresite. West Palm would love to be Boca, not the other way around. The author has little sence of Boca Raton.
On this one I gotta say careful what you wish for.Turning boca into Miami north is a scary thought, I’d urge you to take a walk through downtown Miami and just listen you’ll wander what country your in
The cty’s economic development officer tried to justify their salary at a recent city workshop meeting but she appears to be better at PowerPoint presentations than brining in businesses to fill the million square feet of vacant office space. Our city leaders are more interested in supporting the commercial land owners & their supporting cast than bringing the good paying jobs that wete lost when IBM & subsequent companies exited the Arvida park of commerce area. No need to focus on international business relocation when there is zero degree windchill weather in higher tax northern states.