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From the May Issue


The Greater Phoenix Intelligence Report

Gain an all-around understanding of the Greater Phoenix region’s economic development momentum by reading these stories from the full report:

From the September Issue


Evolving Incentives for Today’s Priorities

Ellen Harpel and Darrene Hackler of Smart Incentives explore how incentive policies are being pulled in new directions with a greater focus on benefiting people and places.

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From the May Issue


Where New Drone Missions Are Being Devised

Two states are emerging as centers of unmanned aerial systems expertise.

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Illustration and chart courtesy of Parkopedia

Talk to any experienced corporate real estate leader involved in location decision-making and he or she will tell you the same thing many of us experience from a different perspective every day: Parking can be an issue, not to mention a real pain. So it can be worth our while to study reports such as the 2022 edition of the Global Parking Index just released by connected car services provider Parkopedia. Among the findings the company says it derived from data on more than 90 million parking spaces in 90 countries:

  • “New York continues to be the most expensive city for 2-hour off-street parking ($43.10 average) and is now also the most expensive city for daily off-street parking ($52.65 average).
  • “Australia also continues to be the most expensive country for both 2-hour off-street parking ($19.12 average) and daily off-street parking ($34.42 average).
  • “South Korea has been named the most expensive country for daily on-street parking, with an average of $37.75, with Russia experiencing one of the greatest changes in the last three years, with a price increase of 42.7% for 2-hour off-street and 42.6% for daily off-street parking.”
  • “Amsterdam ranks as one of the most expensive cities to park in the world, being the most expensive city for 2-hour on-street ($13.31 average), the second most expensive for monthly off-street parking ($641.77 average), as well as the third most expensive for daily off-street ($47.22 average).”

“U.S. cities dominate the results for the most expensive 2-hour off-street pricing, however the most expensive cities for daily-off street parking are predominantly found within Europe,” Parkopedia says, “a trend that is most likely due to U.S. parking operators charging the majority of the daily parking rate upfront (typically the first two hours) in large U.S. cities, an uncommon practice in other countries.” The three trends driving parking prices upward include inflation, regional green initiatives and supply and demand. “In 2021, 79.1 million motor vehicles were produced around the world,” saysthe European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA), “an increase of 1.3% compared to 2020.” Below are the Top 50 cities by price of monthly off-street parking, with prices in US$ and adjusted for local currency using World Bank’s Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) exchange rates.




Arkansas-Grown Fortune 500 Firms Thrive

Homegrown retail, food and logistics giants become titans of global commerce.

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From the September Issue


Ready Today, Preparing for Tomorrow

Workforce development levels up in Arkansas.

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From the September Issue


America is Moving to Arkansas

The numbers prove it, and here’s why.

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Good Jobs First’s campaign to stop subsidies for Amazon continues to ratchet up the pressure. “Amazon.com, Inc. has squeezed more than $5.1 billion from U.S. states and localities in economic development subsidies,” the D.C.-based watchdog said last week in releasing new tax-break data at its Amazon Tracker database documenting hundreds of incentive deals. The fully downloadable data from 309 documented deals also include media production tax credits in New Jersey for Amazon subsidiary Audible; property tax breaks for a Whole Foods in Portland, Maine; tax abatements for a data center in Oregon and film production tax credits for Amazon Studios projects in New York. But 213 of the 309 incentive deals (69%) are for distribution centers. Good Jobs First released the new findings as part of the global “Make Amazon Pay” campaign featuring events in many nations on Black Friday (November 25).




Last Thursday, First Solar Inc. announced plans to invest $1.1 billion to establish a photovoltaic (PV) solar module manufacturing facility in Lawrence County, Alabama, in the northern part of the state, creating over 700 jobs. The new factory in Lawrence County’s Mallard Fox West Industrial Complex 25 miles west of Huntsville is part of the company’s previously announced investment in scaling its American manufacturing footprint to over 10 gigawatts (GW) by 2025, which is the year the Alabama facility is due to be commissioned with a planned annual capacity of 3.5 GW. The company is growing its manufacturing base “in support of the effort to decarbonize the American economy and achieve self-sufficiency in reliable and competitive renewable energy technologies,” said the official announcement, noting the company’s three facilities in Ohio, including one coming online next year. “This facility, along with its sister factories in Ohio, will form part of the industrial foundation that helps ensure this transition is powered by American innovation and ingenuity,” said Mark Widmar, CEO of First Solar.

Source: Conway Projects Report


Second Line Stages, whose facilities include offices in the heart of New Orleans’ Lower Garden District, opened more large soundstage space in the neighborhood early this month to mark the start of the 33rd Annual New Orleans Film Festival. The investment comes two years after California-based Hackman Capital Partners bought Second Line, originally founded in 2010. New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell “said film and television production brought about $1 billion of spending to New Orleans in 2021 and is on track to top that this year,” reported NOLA.com, “as New Orleans cements its spot as the fourth largest television and film production hub in the United States.” The expansion adds two city blocks to Second Line’s overall site and brings the company’s total number of sound stages to eight.

Source: Conway Projects Report



Photo courtesy of the City of Bloomington, Illinois

Four years ago, The Hustle noted that more than 1 million runners take part in more than 1,000 turkey trots and fun runs across the United States on Thanksgiving Day. There’s no telling what that total must be today — you can probably find one within a sweet potato’s throw of wherever you are right now. Among the long-running events held this week will be the 44th Annual Turkey Trot Fun Run and Walk at Miller Park in Bloomington, Illinois, where the full 3-miler gets started at 9:15 a.m. Find a run near you, put on your best turkey hat, layer up and get moving!