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Sharing the progress on the Vision North Iowa plan

During the 'State of North Iowa' presentation, officials share the latest developments in the 5-year comprehensive plan that aims to revitalize the region

Posted: Jan 24, 2020 1:34 AM

MASON CITY, Iowa - The face of North Iowa has changed over the years, from shrinking population to job loss and a housing shortage.

To reverse the tide, the Vision North Iowa plan was launched in 2018. The goals: bolster entrepreneurship, ensure smart economic growth, attract and retain a strong, diverse talent pipeline, attract, expand and retain high-growth companies, and improve quality of place.

So far, the plan is picking up steam. During the 'State of North Iowa' presentation at the Mason City Arena on Thursday morning, officials with the Mason City Chamber of Commerce, the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA), North Iowa Corridor Economic Development Corp., and others shared the news of great strides being made to accomplish those goals in North Iowa.

Debi Durham is the director of the IEDA, and has been an active proponent of the work being done in North Iowa, such as the River City Renaissance project.

"Diversity around population growth, workforce, reinvestment, investing in our community, creating places where people want to live, housing. We talked about a number of things today."

Don O'Connor is a Cerro Gordo County native, and has seen people actively reinvest in the area. He supports the county, and the communities of Clear Lake and Mason City, and their efforts to reach a common goal.

"I think we're a lot stronger as one unit than as three individuals. That's really encouraging to hear today, that is real collaboration really taking place."

"It's really nice to see things happening positive again. The vibrant economics that are going on here."

Within the last few years, Cerro Gordo County has seen a 2.2% increase in job growth (2017-18), a 1.3% increase in employment year over a year, a 20% increase in GDP to $2.47 billion (between 2014-18), enrollment increases in the Clear Lake and Mason City High Schools, 83 new business starts and 357 new jobs created thanks to the NIACC Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center, and over $319 million dollars in capital investment being plugged into projects, like the River City Renaissance and its spin-off projects.

North Iowa Corridor Economic Development Corp. CEO & Director Chad Schreck is upbeat about the progress being made.

"Now, it's really been about the implementation. How do we create the culture we want, the amenities we want? The arena is one of those major components. Getting everyone working together was just critical to getting this thing over the hump and getting it done."

So to help keep the momentum going forward - 

"We want to ensure that we engage with the community, share this with them. It can't be lead by a few people behind the scenes. It needs to be community driven."

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 926931

Reported Deaths: 9740
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin1809132056
Ramsey749811054
Dakota68505591
Anoka64961589
Washington41119367
Stearns34021287
St. Louis29939416
Scott26281188
Wright26260226
Olmsted22677131
Sherburne19206130
Carver1687671
Clay12219108
Blue Earth1162171
Rice11578139
Crow Wing11318124
Chisago1005281
Kandiyohi9913108
Otter Tail9908130
Benton9174128
Beltrami8249100
Goodhue822699
Douglas7967101
Itasca779999
Mower740049
McLeod723384
Winona715158
Isanti711085
Steele695034
Morrison678681
Becker631675
Polk608987
Freeborn569947
Carlton552577
Mille Lacs539479
Lyon532961
Nicollet528561
Nobles527954
Pine521143
Cass505255
Todd496443
Brown473661
Le Sueur464736
Meeker437960
Martin391344
Waseca381433
Wabasha380110
Dodge366412
Hubbard357649
Roseau320532
Fillmore310115
Wadena306040
Redwood283845
Houston275317
Renville271651
Faribault261835
Sibley256017
Pennington254830
Kanabec254437
Cottonwood232933
Aitkin225052
Chippewa222043
Pope209910
Watonwan201121
Yellow Medicine189925
Koochiching179225
Rock178429
Swift174124
Stevens170211
Jackson162016
Clearwater159421
Marshall154822
Murray152911
Pipestone150929
Lake134124
Lac qui Parle124425
Wilkin122016
Mahnomen108314
Norman10579
Grant102410
Big Stone9585
Lincoln8915
Kittson74623
Red Lake71810
Traverse6086
Unassigned563124
Lake of the Woods5285
Cook3141

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 532160

Reported Deaths: 7379
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk81677809
Linn32838430
Scott27126295
Black Hawk22334382
Woodbury20736263
Johnson20150108
Dubuque18996243
Pottawattamie16215214
Dallas15573115
Story1398059
Warren8637107
Cerro Gordo8141125
Clinton7928115
Webster7419124
Des Moines7153106
Marshall675494
Muscatine6717117
Wapello6546145
Unassigned64520
Jasper630591
Sioux622477
Lee5977106
Marion567697
Buena Vista503449
Plymouth493388
Henry427155
Benton414760
Jones413564
Bremer403873
Boone397042
Washington395464
Carroll373355
Mahaska372366
Crawford355647
Jackson324047
Dickinson317555
Buchanan312743
Delaware303255
Clay297636
Kossuth293477
Fayette290356
Hardin289253
Tama282878
Page276133
Wright270050
Cedar269527
Winneshiek267744
Hamilton262757
Floyd261049
Clayton252360
Poweshiek242043
Harrison240979
Madison237425
Butler237346
Cass235667
Iowa234336
Jefferson228544
Mills225330
Hancock222840
Winnebago222339
Cherokee217347
Appanoose210157
Lyon209842
Allamakee209456
Calhoun199519
Shelby199542
Union197141
Humboldt188231
Franklin188031
Grundy186137
Chickasaw184522
Mitchell184343
Emmet180146
Louisa178653
Sac175626
Guthrie169338
Clarke163629
Montgomery163146
Keokuk152639
Palo Alto152332
Howard150624
Monroe144340
Ida134141
Greene128818
Davis126825
Lucas126127
Monona124940
Worth12309
Pocahontas122125
Adair118239
Osceola105718
Decatur104813
Taylor100914
Fremont98913
Van Buren95922
Wayne86125
Ringgold78429
Audubon77617
Adams5869
Rochester
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Albert Lea
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