The study — "Seizing the Manufacturing Moment: An Economic Growth Plan for the Bluegrass Region of Kentucky" — concludes that, with America experiencing a resurgence in manufacturing, the Louisville-Lexington region is uniquely poised to take advantage of the economic trend. However, the region must focus more intently on innovation, research and development and improve the workforce so people have the right skills for these 21st Century jobs.
The report was released today by Lexington Mayor Jim Gray and Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and in partnership with the Brookings Institution of Washington D.C. It's the culmination of a two-year effort by the mayors through the BEAM project, an idea the two created in January 2011, during a University of Kentucky/University of Louisville basketball game at the KFC Yum! Center.
Gray and Fischer, at the time both new mayors and both businessmen with strengths in the manufacturing sector, enlisted the assistance of Brookings to develop a business plan. They also created the BEAM board with academic and corporate leaders from the region.
"We are fierce competitors on the court, but we are now fierce partners in economic development," said Gray. "The study proves that Central Kentucky has manufacturing in its DNA, and it provides a roadmap for building on that advantage, and turning Central Kentucky into a global manufacturing hub."
"This report validates that, if we make targeted and strategic investments, our region can be known globally as the place for manufacturing," Fischer said.
Some of the key findings from the Brookings report include:
The report also recommends six key strategies:
Information provided by office of Mayor Jim Gray
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