Bo Martinez is hoping to create a big, bold vision for the Town of Parker’s future. From ideas for helping small businesses to potential new developments, the town’s new economic development …
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Bo Martinez is hoping to create a big, bold vision for the Town of Parker’s future.
From ideas for helping small businesses to potential new developments, the town’s new economic development director and deputy town administrator has a multitude of ideas.
Before coming to Parker, Martinez completed more than 25 years of economic development experience with positions at the City of Miami Beach, Florida; the City and County of Broomfield; the City and County of Denver; and the City of Phoenix, Arizona. Most recently, he was the president of the Adams County Regional Economic Partnership.
Martinez was hired by the Town of Parker effective Feb. 8 at an annual salary of $184,800, with a $2,280 signing bonus, according to his contract.
“They had a really big emphasis on economic development and place-making, and that was something that really drew me to Parker,” he said. “I eventually wanted to get back to working with a municipality.”
His position’s focus on economic development will include working with community stakeholders to improve the community’s well-being, he said.
“Really just making sure that you’re working on a broad range of activities that can be from business retention and expansion, business attraction, creating and retaining jobs within the community, investments and just building a local tax base and an inclusive economy,” Martinez said.
Martinez set a goal to meet 100 people in his first 100 days on the job. During his first year, he will prioritize development of a comprehensive economic development strategy for the town’s immediate and long-term goals. He plans to work with public and private sector partners along with local business organizations on the strategy, he said.
“When you’re working in the economic development world, you’re really touching lots of different industries,” he said. “At the end of the day, if we can bring everyone together and create this really bold vision and plan for our community, then we’ll be successful now and going forward.”
Martinez summarized his many areas of focus for the town’s future, including diversifying the local economy, growing present businesses and developing new areas of the town in a March 1 interview with The Parker Chronicle,
Among first priorities, Martinez said he plans to focus on business retention within the town and support of small businesses.
“One of the big things I always say when I go to a community is that small business is big business,” he said. “They're really big job creators, and they’re the ones that really build up not only the community but also the economy.”
He’d also like to see the town work on attracting new businesses, both domestic and international. Site selectors tend to look at the cost of real estate, the tax environment, education and the transportation infrastructure and mobility of the area when choosing locations, he said.
“Economic development doesn’t stand on its own, it really takes a lot of other things to make it a great community,” Martinez said. “When we think about community perspective, it’s about parks and recreation and open spaces … Having great town services is a great community benefit when you think about wanting to not only live here but also work here.”
Another focus for his team will be marketing, branding and communication.
“You need to tell the story of ‘Why Parker?’ What sets it apart from not only a regional perspective but also a national perspective?” he said.
Martinez sees retail as one of the biggest sectors of the town’s economy. He’d also like to see growth of the existing industrial park. Other ideas he has involve embracing broadband and working from home options along with development of health and wellness, financial services and aerospace industries.
As far as geographic areas, he believes important areas going forward will be Crown Point, Parker Road, Downtown or Mainstreet, the E-470 area and “some of the newer commercial subdivisions throughout the community going south,” he said.
“I think we’ll continue to see some new developments in different sizes, shapes and forms near (Parker Road, downtown and E-470) but also new, bigger subdivisions where we’re going to see a lot of new residential and some commercial development,” he said. “I think we're about 72% built out, so we’ve got about 30% more to go.”
Upcoming mobility plans could include added pedestrian and bike capabilities, he said
Martinez added that he understands there is a fine balance when it comes to adding more developments to a town and maintaining its current character, emphasizing that infrastructure has to keep up with the growth.
“I know that the Town of Parker really prides itself on being a small town, and I think that’s something that we want to not only sustain but also make sure we embrace as we go forward as we continue to grow and develop as a community,” he said. “We understand that there are going to be residents and businesses that don’t want to see us grow. And on the other side of it there’s going to be people who say ‘if we’re going to grow, let’s make sure we at least do it responsibly.’”
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