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Report: Powder Springs Has Business Potential

Following Mayor Pat Vaughn's State of the City address last week, a representative from the Fanning Institute offered suggestions on growth and development based on a community assessment of the city.

Joy Wilkins, a senior public service associate with the University of Georgia's Fanning Institute, presented Powder Springs residents with the results of a community assessment following .

The assessment includes industry trends in Powder Springs, as well as how the city can help grow and further develop its business aspects. Assisting in the results were 72 residents—76 percent of whom live in the city—who took .

Below are the results of the assessment, which can also be seen in the attached photos from the presentation.

Median Household Income from 2006-10 of Powder Springs, Compared with Cities of Similar Size

  • Powder Springs: $61,486
  • City A: $35,231
  • City B: $61,139
  • City C: $58,438
  • Cobb County: $65,522
  • Georgia: $49,347

Percentage of Population Below Poverty Line from 2006-10

  • Powder Springs: 10.4
  • City A: 17.9
  • City B: 11.9
  • City C: 5.1
  • Cobb County: 10.6
  • Georgia: 15.7


  • Location
  • People
  • Leadership
  • Small town
  • Easy access to government officials


  • Not user-friendly
  • Strict codes and policies
  • Location
  • Cost of doing business


  • Downtown development
  • Proactive in economic development


  • Economy
  • Fear of change
  • Lack of resources

Percentage of Jobs per Industry

  • Retail: 20.8 (down from 24.3 in 2001)
  • Heath care and social service: 12.8 (up from 7.4)
  • Construction: 11.4 (down from 15.1)
  • Accommodation and food service: 9.7 (up from 9.2)
  • Wholesale trade: 8.2 (up from 6)

Percentage of Top Growth Industries from 2001-11

  • Health care and social assistance: 56.5
  • Wholesale trade: 22.6

Industries that Expanded from 2007-11 (Powder Springs had a net loss of jobs of 796, or 13.9 percent of the employee base, from 2007-11)

  • Information: 35
  • Health care and social assistance: 15.1
  • Educational services: 19.2
  • Professional scientific and technical services: 6.7

Predicted Growth of Net Jobs from 2012-16

  • Arts, entertainment and recreation: 13
  • Health care and social services: 149
  • Educational services: 17
  • Manufacturing: 36
  • Information: 3
  • Professional, scientific and technical services: 26

Main Themes for Branding

  • A place open for business
  • A place where downtown is the heart
  • A place to walk through history
  • A place to connect
  • A place for healthy living

Celebrate Success by Launching an Relations Campaign

  • Utilize local media, websites, social media and other channels
  • Host regular public meetings
  • Create community newsletterW
  • Work with Kennesaw State University students to develop news releases and other communication pieces
  • Celebrate citizen contributions

Make Powder Springs a Destination

  • Develop potential destination attractions
  • Explore opportunity with KSU culinary arts program
  • Partner with others on programming for at
  • Increase signage on Silver Comet Trail so riders know they're in Powder Springs
  • Possibly align to coincide with baseball games at

Invest in Economic Development

  • Leverage programs through the Cobb Chamber and Cobb Office of Economic Development
  • Exploore hiring full-time professional
  • Examine possible organizational structures and best practices, keeping in mind that one size does not fit all
  • Determine which industry sectors to focus on; investigate common needs by businesses to address
  • Align workforce development efforts with the development of industry sectors
  • Explore incentive policies from a fiscal and industry sector perspective
  • Recognize and leverage interactive link between planning and economic development
  • Develop a Web portal specifically for economic development
  • Investigate potential sites of 20 acrews or more which could be suitable for industrial development

Focus on Business Climate

  • Recruit existing business leaders to help improve and inform the climate for doing business
  • Connect with Cobb Competitive EDGE efforts
  • Develop a business retention and expansion program
  • Help businesses navigate regulatory permitting and licensing processes
  • Review findings and recommendations of Georgia Competitiveness Initiative
  • Explore linking with SCORE mentoring services
  • Launch a comparative review of all ordinances, permitting and processes; development of review processes and fees associated with doing business
  • Showcase positive testimonials from businesses

Photo Gallery

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