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New CD Web Site


YEA, I finally get a cool assignment. Our CD director knows that I get along with computers, (unlike many in our office) and he asked me to figure out what we need to put on a web site. I was wondering of anyone know of any links to any REALY good Community Development web sites that I should look at. Ours will also act as a developer’s guide, to lure new business to the city.


Check out my web site, www.cityofwhitewater.com as an example. Overall, I would suggest the following:

- Despite what some people want, an economic development web site really is not really much of a marketing tool. It is a location you refer people to as a means of distributing information.

- Keep it simple. Just give them a taste of the community without burying them in information they do not want.

- If you include any demographic information, try to use figures that do not often change. Companies want the most recent figures, like unemployment in March. I know economic development web sites that still have 1998 numbers.

- Attach planning documents, community profiles, and the like as files for downloading. The information is there for anyone who visits the site, and I have found it is incredibly nice to direct someone calling for information to the web site, where it is immediately available to them.

- Include a section for announcements, but don't overdo it.


The list below just came out this week and may be of use.

The top 10 economic development websites according to MuniNet are:

1. Moorhead, Minnesota
2. Anchorage (Alaska) Economic Development Corp.
3. Amarillo (Texas) Economic Development Corp.
4. Portland Development Commission
5. Fairfax County (Virginia) Economic Development Authority
6. Howard County (Maryland) Economic Development Authority
7. Schenectady/Glenville (New York) Empire Zone
8. Mississippi Development Authority
9. New Mexico Economic Development Department
10. Kentucky Cabinet for Economic Development
11. Virginia Economic Development Partnership
12. Washington Office of Trade & Economic Development

The entire article from Area Development Magazine can be found on-line at: http://www.areadevelopment.com/past/0303/features/feature_1.html.