Supervisor Federal Glover, Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors representative for District 5, announced the release today of a report entitled “Revitalizing Contra Costa’s Northern Waterfront: How to be Competitive in the 21st Global Economy” Commissioned by the Board of Supervisors, the report assessed industrial and maritime-related development along the northern stretch of the County’s working waterfront from Hercules to the Antioch Bridgehead.
The report finds that the region retains a number of key advantages for industrial and maritime-related development, despite suffering generally from years of inattention by both the public and private sectors. Investments in the waterfront’s facilities and supporting infrastructure have lagged as well.
“Contra Costa is the second most industrialized county in California,” Supervisor Glover noted. “The Northern Waterfront has historically been the center of most of the County’s manufacturing and industrial output. It is important that we enhance the waterfront to improve our economic base. At the same time, we must balance that with environmental, recreational and transportation needs. If we plan smart, one doesn’t necessarily have to outweigh the other.”
The report determined that the outlook for continued industrial and maritime-related development along the County’s Northern Waterfront is favorable given the Northern Waterfront Initiative convergence of various global and national economic trends.
“That, in turn, benefits the community,” Glover added. “Good-paying jobs stabilize our families and communities. Populations with a strong economic base can provide the amenities and services for healthier and safer communities.”
Craft Consulting Group and Cambridge Systematics were retained by the County to conduct a market assessment after the Board of Supervisors launched the Northern Waterfront Economic Development Initiative in early 2013 to bring together the public and private sectors to strategically plan economic development opportunities in the region.
“Planning regionally gives us a stronger voice, and makes more sense to federal and state agencies,” Glover stated. “Counties traditionally do not delve into economic development, but I asked why not? This county is in a unique position to bring all these diverse stakeholders together. We should have done economic development earlier, especially for one of our county’s underutilized resources – the Northern Waterfront.”
The report concludes by identifying the main challenges Contra Costa County policy makers must consider in adapting and revitalizing this working waterfront into a 21st Century economic asset. The report will be formally presented at a public forum to be held on Friday, January 10, 2014, beginning at 9:30 a.m., at the Antioch Community Center (4701 Lone Tree Way, Antioch, CA). Click here for more information and registration for the January 10, 2014 Public Forum on Revitalizing Contra County’s Northern Waterfront.