Economic Competitiveness and Inclusion Plan
Ramsey County Community & Economic Development
Ramsey County Community & Economic Development’s (CED) focus is to improve the quality of life in their community by maintaining existing housing stock, expanding homeownership and affordable housing opportunities, installing safe infrastructure and facilities, remediating brownfields sites, redeveloping under-utilized properties, strengthening businesses, navigating economic development resources, and encouraging job growth.
CED’s vision for Ramsey County is one of economic competitiveness and inclusion, where its business and talent strengths create new industry growth and all residents have access to existing and future economic opportunities. Eliminating racial disparities in employment, educational attainment and income; creating wealth for residents; addressing gaps in housing and affordability issues; and expanding the talent pool while leveraging existing partnerships, resources, and business expansion programs will help CED achieve its vision and strengthen economic outcomes for all.
Fourth Economy led the overall plan development and coordination between the local and national sub-consultants, and helped facilitate a holistic approach to addressing the community’s opportunities and challenges. Every step along the way, residents, businesses, community leaders, a steering committee, and the Ramsey County Board of Commissioners were invited to engage in the development of an implementable plan that outlines economic and community objectives to pursue over the next five years. This plan is innovative in its understanding of how current levels of poverty and disinvestment began decades ago, and its strategies prioritize inclusion in future investments and other actions related to housing, job creation, workforce development and place-based investments, while responding to the COVID-19 crisis.
The plan was adopted in 2021 and the Ramsey County team immediately began to implement the core recommendations. Over $75M has been committed to affordable and workforce housing development, a $5M business real estate preservation fund was created and several more recommendations have been implemented. The plan won a 2021 International Economic Development Council Award of Excellence.
Ramsey County, MN