by: Larry Burkhardt, CEcD
Executive Vice President
Fox Cities Regional Partnership
The Village of Little Chute
In a recently adopted strategic plan, Village of Little Chute officials indicate that Economic Development is one of four strategic areas of focus from 2015 through 2019. In particular, Little Chute will focus on developing an all-encompassing strategy that takes into account commercial, manufacturing and residential development while leveraging the resources of the Highway 41/441 corridor.
Other action items resulting from the adopted strategic plan will entail upgrading the Village’s Revolving Loan Funds, leveraging the Little Chute Windmill for increased commercial opportunities in the Central Business District, and enacting long-range plans for new industrial and commercial opportunities that also incorporate the Fox River.
Little Chute has experienced moderate growth in commercial, manufacturing and residential sectors over the past year and looks forward to an active 2015 and 2016. Village leaders are committed to responsible development while working with developers on projects that bring long-term value to the community. The village currently has active Tax Increment Districts along the Highway 41 corridor, along with a modest amount of shovel-ready properties available.
- "The Fox Cities Regional Partnership has assisted in a number of our expansions/attractions, and had been instrumental in diversifying the city's economic base economy by working with several food processors now located in the Fox Valley."Bob JakelCity of Kaukauna Director of Planning and Economic Development
- "The Fox Cities Regional Partnership assisted the City of Menasha by providing an evaluation of the economic impact of repurposing the former Menasha Steam Plant into a food processing facility. The Partnership promptly provided projections of the direct and indirect impacts of the project on job and income generation."Greg KeilCity of Menasha Community Development Director
- "The Fox Cities Regional Partnership allows the Village of Little Chute to engage economic developers on a national stage, while also focusing on retention and workforce solutions for our current business partners."Michael R. Vanden BergVillage of Little Chute President
The City of Kaukauna
Starting in spring of 2015, the renovation of the former Eagle Mill in downtown Kaukauna will house the headquarters of Expera Specialty Solutions. Expera operates five paper mills in two states and has shown considerable growth in the specialty paper industry. The Kaukauna facility alone employs more than 500 workers, and the renovation will provide office space for an additional 140 employees. The 88,000-square-foot mill, originally built in 1872, will also house a new 22,000-square-foot public library, and a fine dining/catering establishment.
In addition to thriving paper industry, Kaukauna has been called the “Machine Shop Capital of the Midwest” with a number of expansions in the fabrication, piping and manufacturing sectors. Kaukauna’s Industrial park Network is ideally situated on Interstate 41 between the Appleton/Oshkosh and Green bay labor markets with a population of more than 500,000 people. This location is further enhanced by the city’s low electric rates, shovel-ready lots and easy highway access.
The City of Menasha
Great things are happening in the City of Menasha as people from around the area are increasingly recognizing the unique opportunities that exist here and acting on them. Last year, the city adopted a new brand position statement recognizing that throughout its history the water has played a significant role in the allure of Menasha. Today, the waterfront continues to be Menasha’s most unique asset, and the centerpiece of attraction and retention efforts for businesses and residents alike.
Mensha is going through dramatic growth throughout the community and in all sectors. The attraction of Simply Incredible Foods to the city’s former power plant brings new jobs while continuing Menasha’s Industrial heritage. Downtown continues its revival with a new branch of Community First Credit Union in a new office tower, the opening of Lake House Supper Club and Lemon Loves Lime, and the short-term home of Menasha Corporation’s headquarters. After a 10-year hiatus, the Third Street Market now offers more than just groceries and has become the centerpiece of the neighborhood.
Menasha takes pride in the development of its youth as well. A new Boys and Girls Club and a multi-million dollar renovation of the city’s classic 1930’s High School will ensure Menasha youth have the educational and leadership opportunities necessary to excel in adulthood.
You too can live the waterfront lifestyle enjoyed in Menahsa, and there are still a few choice spots downtown and on the Fox River’s South shore to locate your business.