New Report Finds Owensboro Is On A Roll, But Can’t Rest

by Keith Schneider
July 13, 2011

OWENSBORO, KY – Twenty years after the Peirce Report recommended striking changes in Owensboro’s operating system in order to seize economic opportunities in the last decades of the 20th century, a new team of urban affairs researchers finds that Owensboro at the start of the 21st century is on a roll.

Construction on a new convention center and 150-room hotel to replace some of the Executive Inn’s 591 rooms is scheduled to start later this year. A $385 million medical center is under construction east of the bypass. Airport and riverport leaders are developing new plans to more intensively leverage the region’s location at the center of the country, and its existing complement of transport and warehouse companies, as a national shipment and logistics center. New highways are under construction to fully link Owensboro to Interstates 64 and 65.

But in the first chapter of What’s Done, What’s Next: A Civic Pact, a fresh assessment of Owensboro’s prospects, researchers from Neal Peirce’s Citistates Group also found that in an era of rising energy prices, globalization, intense competition, stagnant incomes, and diminished government resources Owensboro’s work to set a stronger economic and cultural foundation can’t rest.

On Monday, July 18, at 4:30 p.m. at Owensboro Community and Technical College in the Advanced Technology Center, the public is invited to a presentation of the findings from chapter one of the three-part What’s Done, What’s Next: A Civic Pact, by journalist Keith Schneider. Schneider, a member of the Citistates Group and the report’s lead researcher, has been a New York Times writer since 1981.

Refreshments will be served. Send RSVP to Shelly Nichols at [email protected] or 270-685-2652.

Following Schneider’s presentation Citistates CEO Curtis Johnson, a researcher for the Owensboro study, will lead an interactive discussion with an expert panel that includes Gabrielle Gray, International Bluegrass Music Museum; Hugh Haydon, Kentucky BioProcessing; Karen Miller, Owensboro-Daviess County Convention and Visitors Bureau; and Madison Silvert, Greater Owensboro Economic Development Corporation. Members of the audience are invited to participate with questions and comments.

The first chapter of What’s Done, What’s Next: A Civic Pact updates the 1991 report on Owensboro-Daviess County by Peirce and Johnson. Findings from the next two chapters, which focus on a) how Owensboro manages itself, and b) makes recommendations for anticipating new market trends and responding to the 21st century’s velocity of change, will be made public in similar presentation in August and September.

What: Presentation of Report Findings
When: July 18, 2011, 4:30 p.m.
Where: Owensboro Community and Technical College, Advanced Technology Center

Citistates Group

Keith Schneider
(231) 920-0745

Public Life Foundation

Rodney Berry, President
(270) 685-2652

We really want to know your thoughts. Get in touch with me at Thanks — Keith Schneider.

Public Life Foundation of Owensboro
The Citistates Group
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