The City’s Own View of Coral Gables’ Future. Sustainable or Not?

What is the future of the economy of Coral Gables and what on activities and sectors of the local and regional economy will depend the future economic growth and well being of Coral Gables.   The Economic Sustainability Department (formerly the Development Department) has the responsibility for promoting the city and local economy for existing and new business.

The small Department basically seeks to keep and expand the businesses that we have.  It does not seem to recognize the need to identify and seek out new business sectors and lines of activity that would help lead the city grow faster in the future.  It is a small service unit rather than a place to promote new activities on its own or to help the city think about the options for the future.

The Department has a business development plan to assist realtors, building owners, and organizations in attracting domestic and international prospects by utilizing direct contacts, follow-up visits, brochures and audiovisual material. A special focus is placed on multinational recruitment and retail development. The Department also emphasizes the need for developing a better relationship with the existing business community to help improve the retention and expansion of these businesses.

via City of Coral Gables Web Site.

The city has published “A Briefing on the Economic Base in Coral Gables” (2009)  and “Coral Gables, The City Beautiful” (2010) for interested parties.  These reports emphasize the following features of the local economy:

  • The City’s multinational business…includes…oil production, health care, biomedical research, international finance, import and export, transportation, manufacturing, travel and tourism, news information services, telecommunications, and construction real estate.
  • …high quality of life, convenient access, responsible growth, and a diversified economy, property values will continue to increase, supplemented by new appropriate construction…
  • Coral Gables is considered one of the premium office markets in South Florida…
  • …regional headquarters for over 175 multinationals…
  • …over 100 countries are served from corporate addresses…
  • Since…1925, the largest single employer has been the University of Miami…
  • …the combined totals of multinational employment exceed 6,000…
  • …Coral Gables has nine retail districts…
  • …over 30 banking institutions…
  • The median house value has increased by nearly 1,400% since 1970…
  • …Strict zoning laws, a favorable property tax rate…

About Stephen E. McGaughey
International consultant in economic development programs and projects

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