The city of Baltimore has a comprehensive economic development strategy and leaders are looking for feedback before it takes its final shape.
The plan, called “Baltimore Together: a platform for inclusive prosperity“, is open until September 30 for public comment.
Crossed out by the Baltimore Development Corporation (BDC), which is the city’s economic development agency, the plan includes creating a fair economy and building an innovation ecosystem among its main goals for the economy.
Like many government documents, there is a technical process behind how this plan came to be. This particular flavor of relationship is called the Global economic development strategy. It is a plan that is completed every five years for the United States Economic Development Administration serve as a guide as the City seeks federal grants and other funding.
But the approach has been updated in recent years, BDC CEO Colin Tabert Recount Technically. On the one hand, the plan is being carried out by BDC rather than by the city’s planning department, as was the case seven years ago.
When Tarbert took over as head of BDC two years ago, he wanted to open up the process to city partners. BDC has therefore formed more than a dozen working committees for specific categories of the report. This resulted in over 30 meetings, and more conversations between the two.
For the first time, the report specifically focuses work on tackling systemic racism, as well as fairness in the economy, Tarbert said.
“I really see this as creating a coalition of people who care about Baltimore’s economic future with the goal of fostering more equity and inclusion in our economy,” Tarbert said. “It will be this living, breathing thing that will continue over the next five years and evolve.”
Overall, the document serves as a summary of what’s going on in Baltimore’s economy right now. It involves a look at what needs to be improved. It discusses the city’s economic disparities and how job growth and economic development have been oriented around large companies rather than small businesses.
A big part of this is entrepreneurship. The report also contains profiles of 24 people working on efforts at the intersection of innovation and social impact.
Moving forward will not just be about starting new things, but the momentum that helps the community make them happen. Thus, the plan also proposes objectives which will be essential to carry out the plan. These are:
- Work together. Entities working in the city too often work separately, says the plan, so he wants to foster more collaboration
- Invest in people and places. This means creating new opportunities for wealth creation and mobility in BIPOC communities. Baltimore tracks and start Note R3 are specifically mentioned by way of example.
- Building from strength. The plan calls for working towards “bold goals” in areas where the city already has strengths. There are a lot of examples based on technology and innovation here. Social innovation is a particular area where the city has opportunities. Cancer diagnostics and cybersecurity show particular leadership in the life sciences and technology sector. And the city can be a welcoming home for BIPOC and immigrant entrepreneurs, the report says.
- Compete for success. When it comes to aligning with other cities, the City faces challenges such as reducing taxes and fees, growing population, increasing broadband access and digital equity.
The idea is that it is a master plan covering all the economic development of the city. While it includes technology and innovation – which have their own umbrella groups – the report also goes further on economic development strategy. Being organized by BDC allows the report to be an umbrella and the city to be a unifier and to connect between different groups.
Once the report is finalized, the next step, Tarbert said, is to take action.
“This plan is not a BDC plan. This plan is the plan for the city, which is all of us, ”Tarbert said. “Our hope and our goal for this to be successful is to find people or organizations who want to take charge of some of the actions that need to be taken. “