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Entries in Economy (9)

Tuesday
May022017

Getting more out of the Ports-to-Plains Alliance Corridor

May 2, 2017

One of the exciting things about traveling the Ports-to-Plains Alliance Corridor is seeing the economic development benefits of the increased number of travelers along the corridor.  Over the past couple of years, small towns have seen new hotels and truck stops… Dumas, TX; Stratford, TX; Boise City, OK; Eads, CO and Brush, CO have all seen this type of growth and there are others.

The question that is often asked is, what can we do to get even more economic benefit?  Our member, the Town of Limon, found one way to create a community vision designed to increase the economic benefit of its highway corridor as well as its quality of life.  Limon, a town with a population of under 2,000, rests at a highway hub where five major highways come together including the Ports-to-Plains Corridor and Interstate 70.  This small town, once bypassed by Interstate 70, has seen significant economic growth over the years including numerous truck stops, hotels, restaurants and convenience stores. Yet, the town continues to evaluate its potential and found that many of the travelers had no idea of the destinations available off the town’s highway interchanges. Despite reaching about 80,000 lodging nights a year, most visitors never explored the rest of the town to find out what was there.  Few recognized the cultural experience of the Limon Heritage Museum, the recreation opportunities offered by the Tamarack Golf Course, swimming pool, and fishing pond or the entertainment options of a historical movie theatre, bowling alley and local restaurants.

When Limon updated its Comprehensive Plan in 2014-15, it focused on economic development. The local citizens recognized the value of the transportation system including the Ports-to-Plains Corridor, but also recognized that they could still do better.  As a result multiple goals in the Comp Plan addressed the need to explore ways to provide the visitors a better understanding of what this small town had to offer, in the short and long term, and ways to encourage those travelers to #ExploreLimon. CLICK HERE to view or download the Comprehensive Plan.

These goals led the Town to apply on a national basis to host a Citizens’ Institute on Rural Designä (CIRD).  The CIRD program is sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts, USDA-Rural Development, Project for Public Spaces and Orton Family Foundation.  Limon was one of seven (7) communities across the nation to be selected from the 52 applications.  Following eight months of preparation, the CIRD workshop was held over a three-day period, February 27-March 1, 2017.  The Workshop included presentations focusing on wayfaring/signage and development of bicycle/pedestrian trails, but the majority of time was spent with community members creating visions for these two topics. The community was joined by National and State Resource Teams which brought significant expertise and energy to the small community. 

To see the final report, please CLICK HERE.  There are some great ideas included in the report for small community implementation.

For more information on CIRD, CLICK HERE.

As a result of the CIRD Workshop, the State Resource Team opened an even larger door to explore and implement not only the visions for wayfaring/signage and bicycle/pedestrian paths but many of the other projects included in the Comprehensive Plan.  The State Resource team has offered to host another project funders meeting to hear Limon’s “Grand Plan” and make commitment for funding a variety of long term community projects.  The transportation system continues to be a huge catalyst for accomplishing any of the goals and objectives defined during the planning process.  Without that transportation system, it is hard to picture Limon’s economy and quality of life.  That is one reason for Limon’s commitment to the Ports-to-Plains Alliance. 

Limon’s economic plans are not limited to increasing and improving the visitors’ numbers and experience.  You will see in the Comp Plan that the community is also supporting of efforts to recruit primary jobs.  During the same period Limon was granted the authority to operate a Foreign Trade Zone and continues to look to provide a base for manufacturing, assembly and distribution.

Rural communities need to find ways to create the vision of their community for the future.  Hanging on to the status quo is not vision.  If you have questions, please contact Joe Kiely, who serves Ports-to-Plains Alliance as its Vice President of Operations (719-740-2240 – joe.kiely@portstoplains.com)

Tuesday
Apr252017

With NAFTA, Mexico and the U.S. build things together 

The Dallas Morning News

April 25, 2017

Since NAFTA was signed 24 years ago in my hometown of San Antonio, U.S. trade with Mexico and Canada has more than tripled, and there is no question that Texas has benefited the most. With easy access to two of the busiest U.S. ports of entry via land and sea — Laredo and Houston — it is no surprise that Texas exported more than any other state in 2014, almost $300 billion-worth to countries worldwide. Across the U.S., all but ten states depend on Canada or Mexico as their largest export markets.

While "free trade" has been blamed for job losses in many parts of the nation, as of 2014 nearly five million jobs across the U.S. depend on trade with Mexico. These jobs are not just in Texas. In 2015, Mexico was the first or second export destination for 30 out of 50 states.

Read on...

Tuesday
Feb212017

Texas Oil Fields Rebound From Price Lull, but Jobs Are Left Behind

New York Times

February 21, 2017

MIDLAND, Tex. — In the land where oil jobs were once a guaranteed road to security for blue-collar workers, Eustasio Velazquez’s career has been upended by technology.

For 10 years, he laid cables for service companies doing seismic testing in the search for the next big gusher. Then, powerful computer hardware and software replaced cables with wireless data collection, and he lost his job. He found new work connecting pipes on rigs, but lost that job, too, when plunging oil prices in 2015 forced the driller he worked for to replace rig hands with cheaper, more reliable automated tools.

“I don’t see a future,” Mr. Velazquez, 44, said on a recent afternoon as he stooped over his shopping cart at a local grocery store. “Pretty soon every rig will have one worker and a robot.”

Oil and gas workers have traditionally had some of the highest-paying blue-collar jobs — just the type that President Trump has vowed to preserve and bring back. But the West Texas oil fields, where activity is gearing back up as prices rebound, illustrate how difficult it will be to meet that goal. As in other industries, automation is creating a new demand for high-tech workers — sometimes hundreds of miles away in a control center — but their numbers don’t offset the ranks of field hands no longer required to sling chains and lift iron.

Read on...

Friday
Mar072014

Ports-to-Plains Alliance Welcomes TMAZ, as its New International Member

Link to article in Spanish

Ports to Plains Alliance corridor members want to welcome our new member: “Terminal Marítima Mazatlán” (TMAZ). Our new member is located in a region where the primary activities related to agriculture, livestock, fishing and mining acquire significant importance at a national and international level for the quality raw materials supply. These activities are the engine of the economy.

Sinaloa state is the leader in agricultural food production in México, ranking first in the production of corn, tomatoes and chili, harvesting 38% of the vegetables in the country. In grains, white corn stands out with a production of more than 5 million tons per year, approximately 50% destined to exports. 

Much of the production primary sector is exported to different parts of the world, positioning México and its partners as a major player in international markets. For example, many products from Sinaloa state are becoming more accepted in other countries including exports such as tomatoes, chickpea, avocado, and vegetables, and others.

In addition, the arrival of shale natural gas to Mazatlán in 2016, promises an industrial revolution in the market. This will certainly will bring large project cargoes to the port.

The revival of the mining activity, dormant since 2011, is another sector that regains its main relevance. This is not only for the volume of its exports, but because it is also a major consumer of imported technology. This technology, whether for exploration or extraction, is transported by sea. Shale gas in northern México will be a great opportunity for investors.

By land, Mazatlán has a major highway that connects it with all the southern area of the United States along the northern border of Mexico and with Mexico City in the center of the country. This roadway goes through states that have strong industrial activity, such as Jalisco with Guadalajara City.

Sinaloa, having over 400 miles of coastline, offers the country through its main port, Mazatlán, the natural gateway to the Pacific Ocean for the entire region. Iits production and consumption centers including the neighbor state of Durango with its significant and booming industrialization.

This port will be the main gateway to international trade from Alberta, Canada, the United States and México to and from the Asian market. Ports-to-Plains can connect to the Pacific Coast offering Canada, United States and México partners a new gateway to the Pacific. 

With the alliance of TMAZ, Ports-to-Plains Alliance continues to develop worldwide economic opportunities for all types of products and services. From agricultural sector, to industrialized goods from various types of clusters, opportunities from the shale gas industry and logistically in land processes, TMAZ will enhance NAFTA competitiveness worldwide.

Congratulations and PTP welcomes TMAZ..!

PTP ALLIANCE MEXICO. 

Fernando Madero; cel. Phone: 011 52 1 871 120 1030

fernando.madero@portstoplains.com

For more information on TMAZ

Thursday
Dec052013

Hydraulic Fracturing Videos: Celebrities: You Don’t Know What You’re Fracking Talking About

About 60% of oil and 98% of natural gas consumed in America is produced in America. Hydraulic fracturing is a safe process used in about 90% of U.S. wells. Banning fracking would virtually halt oil and natural gas development in America, causing us to import more energy from overseas where it’s done with less environmental protection.

Click here for complete article and videos > Western Energy Alliance

Recently, ill-informed Hollywood celebrities released a video on a topic they obviously know nothing about – fracking. Urging President Obama and the Governors of Colorado and New York to ban fracking, these celebrities clearly don’t understand that their lavish lifestyles depend on oil and natural gas. From providing the mobility to travel the world; heating and cooling their mansions; powering their electronics; and providing the feedstock for countless consumer products such as cosmetics, smart phones, clothing and the chemicals used in plastic surgery, their way of life would vanish without oil and natural gas…

Wednesday
Nov202013

Toward a More Competitive Colorado report released: Annual benchmark study examines competitive factors related to economic growth

This report, released by Ports-to-Plains Alliance member Metro Denver EDC, is a wealth of data that allows comparisons with every state and with just a little work with each state and other countries.  It is a wealth of economic benchmarks.  Clearly worth your time to review.

~~~~~~~~~~

"The good news again is that Colorado continues to rank among the most economically competitive states in the United States in key measures such as job growth, innovation, and technology concentration," said Tom Clark, CEO of the Metro Denver EDC.

Click here for complete release > Denver Metro Economic Development Corporation

November 18, 2013

The Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation (Metro Denver EDC) released on Nov. 18, 2013, the ninth edition of Toward a More Competitive Colorado (TMCC), an annual benchmark report of Colorado's strengths, challenges, and opportunities for future job growth and economic expansion.

First published in 2005, TMCC is the foremost effort to compare Colorado's competitive position against the other 49 states. The study is researched and developed by the Metro Denver EDC's Chief Economist, Patty Silverstein of Development Research Partners, and is presented in cooperation with Wells Fargo…

Executive Summary

Complete Report

Tuesday
Aug062013

Amarillo: Old Dominion Relocates Amarillo Service Center: Larger facility to meet growing demand in Texas Panhandle

The facility provides direct service throughout the Texas Panhandle (including Amarillo, Hereford, Borger, Dumas, Dalhart and Pampa), in addition to Tucumcari, N.M., and Elk City, Okla.

Click here for complete press release > Old Dominion Freight Line, Inc.

Old Dominion Freight Line, Inc. today opened its new 32-door service center in Amarillo, Texas, more than doubling the company’s shipping capacity in the Texas Panhandle.

The recently relocated Amarillo Service Center employs 15 people and contains numerous upgrades, including 20 additional doors and an expanded loading dock.

Strategically located along east-west Interstate 40, the facility transports a diverse range of freight, often tied to the region’s robust agricultural, oil and natural gas industries…

Wednesday
Jun192013

Cenovus grows rail tanker fleet to 800 cars

 

Anyone still think that the oil sands production will stop if the Keystone XL Pipeline is not approved?Rail movement will continue to grow, resulting in more opportunity for rail accidents thru populated areas, more pressure on the rail systems limiting the movement of other goods and increased costs borne by consumers.  Rail movement averages about $15 a barrel while pipelines are about $7 a barrel.Consumers pay the difference in the final product.

Rail transport costs more than pipe — Cenovus estimates $15 per barrel to move oil to the Gulf Coast — but wide differentials make it worthwhile if it fetches higher prices at the end market.

Click here for complete article > Calgary Herald

June 19, 2013

Thermal oilsands producer aims to move 30,000 bpd by end of 2014.

Thermal oilsands giant Cenovus Energy Inc. says it will increase its rail transportation capacity to 30,000 barrels per day or 10 per cent of overall production by the end of 2014.

The ramp up from a 10,000-bpd goal this year is designed to reduce reliance on export pipelines and comes as 10 Nobel Peace Prize winners released a letter again urging U.S. President Barack Obama to reject the Keystone XL pipeline to the Gulf Coast…