Roanoke Region of Virginia


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  • Population: 315,092 (2009 estimates, released Jan. 27, 2010) Above sea level: 1149 Climate: 56 avg year round temperature. 75 in July, 34 in January. Very small risk of hurricane, tornado, earthquake. Heart of the Mid-Atlantic -- Equidistant from NY and Atlanta One-day’s shipping distance to 2/3 of the US Population and ¾ of all US manufacturers! Excellent highway infrastructure, served by both NS and CSX. Intermodal scheduled to open in 2010-2011, the Heartland Corridor connecting Norfolk Ports to Chicago. Foreign Trade Zone and Inland Port - FTZ #238. Regional Airport – connects to 9 cities, approx 25 departing flts/day. Atlanta, Chicago, Charlotte, Detroit, Philadelphia, LaGuardia, Dulles, Plus regular low-cost flts to and Orlando/Sanford and Tampa/St. Pete by Allegiant Air. Airport is 10 minutes from downtown business district.
  • Unemployment Insurance Tax/Employee (2008) Unemployment insurance tax per employee is a product of the average unemployment insurance tax as a percentage of taxable wages and the taxable wage base. Source: Average Employer Contribution Rates, By State, CY 2008, Employment and Training Administration, United States Department of Labor Workers' Compensation Insurance (1/1/09) Net Workers' Compensation insurance cost for manufacturing industry (per $100 of payroll). States with no data provide workers' compensation insurance through a state fund. Source: Workers Compensation State Rankings Manufacturing Industry Rates and Statutory Benefit Provisions, 2008 Edition, Actuarial & Technical Solutions, Inc.
  • Governor’s Opportunity Fund and Tobacco Region Opportunity Fund are discretionary incentive programs applied to highly competitive projects often involving out-of-state competition and are typically used to close deals. GOF is available to all communities in Virginia and TROF is available only to those projects in the Tobacco region of VA. The VJIP program provides customized training and recruiting services to companies creating new jobs in Virginia. Enterprise zones are program incentives providing cash grants on the basis of the level of job creation or of investment in real property only in specifically targeted areas. The Roanoke region has four enterprise zones. Technology zones allow localities to create zones where qualified business projects can receive local permit and use fee waivers, tax incentives, or other special grants and incentives. Major Business Facility Job Tax Credit allows companies to claim a $1,000 corporate income tax credit per job over a 50-job threshold. Other tax incentive programs apply including the Recycling Equipment Tax Credit, the Green Job Creation Tax Credit, and the Worker Retraining Tax Credit.
  • The Economic Development Access Program, Rail Industrial Access Program, and the Transportation Partnership Opportunity fund are all related to improving transportation infrastructure to serve a new industrial or commercial site. The Major Eligible Employer Grant, Virginia Investment Partnership Grant, and the Virginia Economic Development Incentive Grant are all aimed at particularly large projects with substantial job creation and investment activity. All three programs are discretionary and amounts are determined by the state utilizing a return on investment model.
  • In addition to boosting the Governor’s Opportunity Fund, there are a number of proposed enhancements to the State’s existing incentive policy. These recommendations were made by the Governor’s Economic Development and Job Creation Commission. The group has proposed increasing the funding available to the Enterprise Zone program to ensure every eligible project is funded. A new Port of Virginia Tax Credit has been proposed which would encourage Virginia companies to utilize the Port of Virginia for export and import of materials and finished goods relative to their Virginia manufacturing operations. The group has also recommended phasing out by-right alternative energy credits for more targeted, negotiated clean energy grant programs that align with Virginia’s competitive advantages in alternative energy. Finally, the group has recommended that arbitrary eligibility standards be eliminated from programs such as the Governor’s Opportunity Fund with the idea that projects should benefit regardless of size as long as a positive return to the Commonwealth can be demonstrated.
  • – Best Cities for Business and Careers, 39 in April 2010. Business Facilities – Editor’s Location Pick Milken Institute - Roanoke rose 42 positions to No. 126 out of the 200 largest US metro areas, according to the 2009 Milken Institute/Greenstreet Real Estate Partners Best-Performing Cities Index. The Roanoke Region was the highest-ranking of Virginia’s major metropolitan areas for high tech Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth from 2007-08, which measures that sector's output growth relative to the U.S. average. – Best Places to Live; 25 Best Places to Retire; Best Small Towns; Best Places for Jobs Kiplinger’s Best Cities – 167 out of 367, May 2010. BizJournals – Top Mid-Size Metros for Quality of Life Progessive Farmer – Top Counties in the Southeast to Raise a Family Pinnacle Living Mountain Homes – 10 Great Urban Places Golf Magazine – Best New Golf Courses in America
  • Virginia Tech has 16 university level research centers, ranging from the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute to the Fralin Life Sciences Institute to the Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine and Research Institute. Research areas include smart transportation, advanced manufacturing, LEAN integration, chemicals, energy, materials, environment, innovative technologies and complex systems, health, and life sciences. Virginia Tech has specific research institutes and centers focused on life sciences, critical technology and applied sciences, bioinformatics, medical research, transportation research, geospatial information, gerontology, human-computer interaction, applied mathematics, macromolecules, coal and energy research, and water resources.
  • 0.108 undergraduates/capita. Higher than Austin, Boston, San Francisco and Research Triangle. Read the whole story: 47.5% of all bachelor’s degrees in the region are science and engineering degrees, compared to the national average of 43.6%. 21 colleges & universities within a 60-mile radius (including new medical school). Engineering programs at Virginia Tech and Virginia Military Institute Virginia Western, Dabney S. Lancaster, New River Valley, Central Virginia & Patrick Henry Community Colleges Degrees: 2,054 Associate’s, 12,465 Bachelor’s, 438 First Professional, 4,112 Master’s, 974 Doctorate’s Link to map:,-79.870605&spn=2.907564,4.938354&z=8
  • Moody’s Cost of Doing Business: The relative business cost index is composed of labor costs, tax burdens, energy costs, and office costs. In the overall business cost index, a state-specific component weight system has been adopted to more accurately account for an area’s business cost structure. The index is configured so that the cost of doing business nationally equals 100. Thus, an MSA with a cost index of 110 has business costs 10% above the national average; an index of 85 means an MSA has business costs 15% below the national average ACCRA Cost of Living data shows that the cost of living which includes components for housing, utilities, health care, food, transportation, and a host of miscellaneous goods and services shows that costs in the Roanoke Region are 93.5% of the national average. Finally, Edison Electric Institute estimates that industrial electric bills are 72.6% of the national average for the same usage and RS Means estimates that construction costs in the Roanoke area are around 13% lower than the national average.
  • Diverse group of large employers with national brand identities. The Roanoke Region’s corporate community includes representatives of manufacturing, banking, finance, and insurance, and transportation/logistics.
  • Numbers are for the 60-mile labor draw area which includes the MSA plus certain contiguous counties. Unemployment is for August 2010, Underemployment is for 6/10 (calculated by VEDP) Unemployed-29,000+ Northernmost Southern State that is ‘right to work’
  • Partnership between VA Tech and Carilion Clinic Opened Fall 2010. Dedicated to training physician researchers Partnership between VA Tech and Carilion Clinic Research focus areas include addiction research, cancer biology, computational biology, developmental and regenerative medicine, cardiovascular science and cardiology, infectious disease, inflammation, neurobiology, cognitive neuroscience, and decision-science. Move to clinic model. Look at Rochester MN to see economic development potential Carilion hired 1000 people in past 18 mos. Take until 2016 to fully integrate Supports an already growing industry in the Roanoke Region – healthcare industry grew by nearly 9% in last three years when nationally the industry flatlined.
  • The region is known for outdoor amenities such as hiking, biking, fly-fishing, and climbing. Appalachian Trail – the longest marked mountain trail in the country lies within the Roanoke Region, offering easy access to endless hiking and backpacking opportunities. Blue Ridge Parkway – the 469 mile National Parkway is located within the region. Numerous Parkway amenities are located within the Roanoke region and within a couple hours drive in either direction including the Peaks of Otter, Roanoke Mountain campground, Mabry Mill, and the trail network at Explore Park. National Forest – Over 300,000 acres of national forest land lies within the Roanoke Region with numerous opportunities for outdoor recreation from wilderness exploration, hunting, fishing, hiking, backpacking, mountain biking, etc. Two state parks within the Roanoke Region at Smith Mountain Lake and Douthat State Park to the north. The region has abundant water-based recreational opportunities. Carvin’s Cove is the 2 nd largest municipal park in the United States at 12,700 acres and offers mountain bikers more than 40 miles of trail. The Cove is an 800 acre reservoir with fishing and boating opportunities. Smith Mountain Lake is 20,000 acre lake with 500 miles of shoreline.
  • $67 million Taubman Museum of Art in downtown Roanoke with numerous programs. The region has a robust arts and culture community including numerous art, science, and culture museums, an opera, a symphony, community microcinema, and ballet theatre. Downtown is experiencing an explosion of downtown living opportunities and demand with many units leased prior to a project’s opening. Several projects in progress. Downtown Roanoke offers many exquisite dining opportunities from American cuisine, to Italian, Mediterranean, and many other dining opportunities.
  • Roanoke Region of Virginia

    1. 2. Strategic Location <ul><li>In the center of the East Coast </li></ul><ul><li>Largest metro area in western Virginia </li></ul><ul><li>1,874 square miles </li></ul><ul><li>315,092 Population </li></ul><ul><li>Within a day’s drive of 2/3 US Population </li></ul>
    2. 3. Virginia Leads the Nation Best Business Climate Top State for Business Top Pro Business State
    3. 4. Virginia’s Low Business Costs 6% Corporate Income Tax Unchanged Since 1972
    4. 5. Incentives Do the Job Cash Grants and Training Assistance Zone-Based Incentives and Tax Credits
    5. 6. Incentives Do the Job Infrastructure Assistance Megaproject Incentives
    6. 7. Proposed Incentives
    7. 8. Roanoke Making News
    8. 9. Research for Industry Virginia’s leading research university
    9. 10. Higher Education <ul><li>Concentration of college students </li></ul><ul><li>21 colleges and universities </li></ul><ul><li>Higher % of college grads in science and tech than the US </li></ul><ul><li>20,000 graduates annually </li></ul><ul><li>1,500 engineering </li></ul><ul><li>graduates </li></ul>
    10. 11. Business Advantages
    11. 12. Prestigious Neighborhood
    12. 13. <ul><li>341,269 workers </li></ul><ul><li>8.5% unemployed </li></ul><ul><li>31,016 (9.9%) </li></ul><ul><li>underemployed </li></ul><ul><li>Right-to-Work state </li></ul>Workforce Who and Where
    13. 14. Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine & Research Institute <ul><li>First class in 2010 </li></ul><ul><li>Research focus </li></ul><ul><li>12 specialized research areas </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Cardiology </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cancer biology </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Neurobiology </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Developmental medicine </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Infectious disease </li></ul></ul>
    14. 15. <ul><ul><ul><li>600 miles hiking trails </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>20 miles greenways </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>45 miles bike trails </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>24 rivers and creeks </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>2 nd largest US municipal park </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Largest lake in VA </li></ul></ul></ul>The Great Outdoors
    15. 16. <ul><li>Arts and </li></ul><ul><li>cultural </li></ul><ul><li>scene </li></ul><ul><li>Downtown </li></ul><ul><li>living </li></ul><ul><li>Fine dining </li></ul>Vibrant Downtown
    16. 17. Available Properties
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