Smart growth helps businesses do more business. Whether it’s recruiting and retaining a reliable workforce, increasing access to jobs through better transportation options, contributing to the economic vitality of downtowns or attracting the millennial generation and creative class, smart growth helps workers, businesses and customers connect. From the small town pharmacy to large-scale corporations, smart growth is good for businesses of all sizes.
Smart growth strategies help recruit and retain employees.
Smart growth features – such as walkable neighborhoods, well-connected transit systems and strong local economies – can give businesses a competitive edge in recruiting and retaining well-educated, well-trained workers. By choosing to locate in smart growth areas, companies can stay competitive in the knowledge economy.
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Smart growth strategies boost foot traffic.
Many small businesses – including restaurants, bars and retail stores – rely heavily on foot traffic. Communities with homes, shops and jobs close by provide the steady stream of potential customers to make these businesses viable. Stores on well-lit main streets with wide sidewalks, in town centers or near transit stations earn higher revenue per square foot than stores located elsewhere. When people can walk to the store and enjoy the route, they linger and spend money in these smart growth locations.
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Smart growth strategies improve efficiency.
When products, employees or clients are stuck in traffic, efficiency is lost and so is revenue. Smart growth strategies reduce congestion and delays and that means higher productivity for workers and more efficient distribution networks.
Smart growth strategies raise commercial property values.
Research on commercial real estate investment has found that “responsible property investments” — including investments in properties that are either ENERGY STAR, located in regeneration areas or near transit — had better performance and with less risk than investment in properties without these features. In Santa Clara County, CA, commercial land value within one quarter of a mile of commuter rail stations increased 120%; in Washington D.C., commercial property value increased $2.30/sq.ft. with each 1,000 ft. reduction in distance to a rail station.
Smart growth strategies create a stronger local economy.
Businesses around the country support smart growth investments for the economic benefits they provide to businesses and customers alike. Smart growth development boosts property values, attracts private investment and helps communities become more economically stable and sustainable. In addition, smart growth strategies benefit household budgets, offer a good return on public investment and help keep local dollars in the community – all of which benefit local economies and businesses in the area.
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