DANVILLE, VIRGINIA – The Partnership for Regional Prosperity, an organization focused on anticipating issues related to dramatic growth coming to Danville and Pittsylvania County, presented the results of community workshops that identified trends most certain to have a high impact on the region. An event on June 21 at the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research attracted elected officials, community leaders, and citizens to learn about how ready the region is for the future.
The Big Sort workshops had 37 teams at four regional events evaluate 47 trends in society, technology, economy, environment, and politics for impact and certainty. Trends identified as high impact and high certainty then were ranked in terms of regional readiness on a scale of 0 (least ready) to 10 (most ready).
Trends identified high impact/high certainty by at least 68 percent of teams are:
- Rising Demand for New Housing
- Rising Pressures to Address Child Care
- Improving Water and Sewer
- Increasing Cyber Security Needs
- Rising Broadband Demand
- Rising Telehealth for Mental Health
- Rising Minimum Wage
- Increasing Tourism Economy
- Increasingly Sophisticated Mfg.
Trends ranked high impact/high certainty by at least 50 percent of teams and above the median in terms of regional readiness (more ready) are:
- Increased Sales Tax to Fund Capital School Projects (9.19)
- Increasing Interest in Entrepreneurship (7.61)
- Growing Investments in Public Education (6.95)
- Increasingly Sophisticated Manufacturing (6.81)
- Increasing Tourism Economy (6.28)
Trends ranked high impact/high certainty by at least 50 percent of teams and below the median in terms of region readiness (less ready) are:
- Rising Minimum Wage (5.98)
- Rising Telehealth for Mental Health (5.68)
- Rising Broadband Demand (5.10)
- Increasing Cyber Security Needs (4.96)
- Improving Water & Sewer Infrastructure (4.83)
- Rising Pressures to Address Child Care (3.21)
- Rising Demand for New Housing (2.9)
Moving forward, the Partnership initially will focus on three broad areas, child care, housing, and infrastructure that were identified as weak in regional readiness. The regional think tank is prepared to build on its research by engaging community conversations around a platform of shared learning and encouraging collaboration around these areas.
“These workshops, engaging the community, provide valuable information on how this community sees itself,” said Ken Larking, Danville city manager. Stuart Turille, Pittsylvania County administrator. “This not only gives direction to the Partnership but to local governments and community agencies who will work together to help create the future our region desires and deserves.”
The Partnership for Regional Prosperity was formed by local elected bodies as a civic think tank that will make Danville and Pittsylvania County models of future-forward thinking and action.