The spelled out some specific points of emphasis Thursday at its annual briefing for a new five-year economic development plan.
Titled “Staying on Top: The Shape of Things to Come,” the key points are:
• Triangle North:
The rural job-growth effort in the region’s northern tier that is based on an innovative partnership among Franklin, Granville, Vance and Warren counties. Triangle North seeks to advance economic opportunity through the development and promotion of high-quality business parks located in each county, with all counties sharing revenues derived from the businesses locating at these properties.
• Defense-related economic development:
Regional economic developers, led by those in the three southern-tier counties of Harnett, Lee and Moore, are collaborating with the Base Realignment and Closure Regional Task Force to build links between the commercial and intellectual assets of the Research Triangle Region and the U.S. Army’s growing presence at Fort Bragg. The needs of the nation’s defense and homeland security agencies will help drive job opportunities, business creation, contracting and R&D efforts for workers, businesses and institutions in the region, including its more-rural counties.
• “Green Economy” business growth:
The region’s R&D infrastructure, educational leadership, skilled workforce, abundant lands and other assets provide a competitive edge for the region in the area of alternative energies, environmental technologies and “green” enterprises. Economic developers, academic leaders, government officials and business executives will collaborate in ensuring the Research Triangle Region taps its share of new jobs and business opportunities associated with this emerging segment of the world’s economy.
• E-learning, digital gaming and training innovation:
The region’s competitive position in software development, networking and education make it a prime location for new technologies and techniques in the realm of digital games and learning environments useful in a wide spectrum of adult education and training. Existing industry leaders, university and community college experts, and regional economic developers will work to harness additional job-creation and business-growth opportunities associated with this fast-growing technology sector.
• Reality Check:
Triangle Tomorrow, RTRP’s quality-of-life program, will develop an action plan for how the region can accommodate more than 1 million people and 700,000 jobs expected to be added over the next 20 years. This follows a February visioning exercise and public forum in which hundreds of regional stakeholders identified possible scenarios for ensuring quality growth in the region and the barriers and opportunities that will drive and impact it.