There are so many fun parts of this job, but an aspect of it I really enjoy is learning about exciting opportunities all across the state.
This past week I spent time in both Washington County and Cache County. How lucky am I to see Utah from South to North during our beautiful autumn.
The Washington County area has some really exciting things on the horizon that I wanted to share:
The Kem C. Gardner Institute predicts Washington County will make up 12% of the State’s forecasted population increase between now and 2065. That means Washington County is forecasted to add 360,000 people – 3x its current population – over the next 50 years.
Several years ago, the St. George airport moved from a beautiful bluff in the middle of town to a location just outside of St. George. This has led to two really positive things:
The larger runway allows for better flight service and larger planes. There’s direct service between SGU and SLC, Pheonix, Denver, and Los Angeles. Southern Utah is well connected to the entire western United States.
Moving the airport in St. George is not unlike moving the state correctional facility along the Wasatch Front. Community leaders in St. George are positioning the vacated airport site as “Tech Ridge.” Community leaders in Washington County and St. George wisely view the opportunity as a generational one, and a chance to support the growing tech economy of Southern Utah by making smart and long-term investments in this publicly controlled land in the heart of St. George.
Dixie State University is investing significantly in technical education, all but transforming into a polytechnic institution. DSU will play a major role in training the workforce of tomorrow and supporting innovation and entrepreneurism through its Innovation Plaza.
Thanks to our kind partners in Washington County at St. George Area Economic Development for hosting me. I really enjoyed spending time in your community.
Thanks also to my friends at Utah State University for the warm welcome on Friday. Keep a watchful eye on the Huntsman School of Business and other colleges within USU. There are great things in store for the University, for its students, and for Cache Valley.