The economic development fortunes, even amid the covid-19 pandemic, has been remarkable for the Owatonna area in 2020. A record $104M in new building far exceeded any prior year in our community. That’s great news, but can it be done again? Will 2021 propel us forward?
First, let’s recap where we’re at after the year that was 2020 courtesy of the Owatonna Partners for Economic Development:
-Costco Depot opens in October, hiring close to 150 people and moving leadership from across the country to Owatonna.
-Rise Modular opens their new business customizing the former Chart building into a modern modular construction site for apartments and hotels.
-Minimizer turns dirt on a new 80,000 square foot industrial site consolidating multiple buildings to one in Owatonna.
-Revol Greens announces expansion locations and triples their greenhouse acreage in Owatonna.
-Daikin Applied builds a 150,000 square foot warehouse and distribution center.
-Bushel Boy starts growing strawberries in a new 80,000 square foot greenhouse.
Those were the ‘headline’ projects. Somewhat quietly, commercial businesses expanded. Apartments went up and new houses were built.
Amidst these positives, covid-19 shutdowns dramatically impacted small, independently owned businesses. Losses mounted, government programs were enacted. A second round of closures late in the year hit hospitality businesses again-even harder.
Despite these challenges, there is good reason to believe Owatonna will be chasing down economic successes again in 2021.
Here’s 3 top reasons for strong optimism:
Our Chamber has approximately 530 members that invest their resources, employee volunteerism and confidence in the Owatonna Area Chamber of Commerce & Tourism and the business community.