PORT ARTHUR — City leaders held a ribbon cutting ceremony for a new park that officially opened Tuesday on Procter Street.
Ashley DeVriend spoke to Mayor Derrick Freeman says the event marks progress toward a better quality of life for residents and hopes businesses will open downtown.
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In May of 2016, Port Arthur citizens approved an Affordable Housing Ballot Proposition which allows PAEDC funds to be used to implement an affordable housing program in the area of 5th Street to 8th Street from Atlanta Ave. to Nashville Ave. The program is designed to attract citizens of Port Arthur to assist them in building new single family dwellings. The PAEDC is excited to attract new home build while assisting its citizens.
WASHINGTON, DC (Sept. 27, 2016) – The Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation of Port Arthur, TX, received a Silver Excellence in Economic Development Award for its 2016 project in the category of Paid Advertisement Campaign from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC).
The honor was presented at an awards ceremony on Tuesday, Sept. 27, during the IEDC Annual Conference, which was held Sept. 25-28, in Cleveland, OH.
“On behalf of the IEDC board of directors and Excellence in Economic Development Awards Advisory Committee, congratulations to the Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation. Not only did they work to provide a necessary service to their community; but also, their participation in the awards program sheds light on their stellar projects which other communities can now use a benchmark.” – Barry Matherly, CEcD, FM, IEDC 2016 Board Chair, President & CEO of the Greater Richmond Partnership.
The project is a paid advertising campaign with focus on Site Selector Magazines Billboards in the Houston, Texas and Louisiana markets. This advertising campaign was created in order for the City of Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation to attract both regional and Global decision makers such as site selectors and business consultant’s, especially those in the logistics industry to Port Arthur, Texas.
The goal is to raise awareness of what Port Arthur has to offer and why companies should consider relocating or moving to the community. In 2013, the Port Arthur Economic Development Board of Directors added a Marketing Manager position to its staff to accomplish this task; knowing that small businesses are the engine that drives Port Arthur’s economy and aids in helping to create the kinds of jobs and opportunities that are necessary to continuous community growth.
Supplementing the campaign advertisement Build it, Ship it, Rail it in Port Arthur, Texas was focus on local business attraction using social media outlets, including Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram.
IEDC’s Excellence in Economic Development Awards recognize the world’s best economic development programs and partnerships, marketing materials, and the year’s most influential leaders. These awards honor organizations and individuals for their efforts in creating positive change in urban, suburban, and rural communities.
“The awards process is a thorough, non-biased and multi-layered process. These are extraordinary accomplishments for all winners, and an overall great effort by all participants. We look forward to next year’s awards competition,” Matherly said.
About the International Economic Development Council
The International Economic Development Council (IEDC) is a non-profit membership organization serving economic developers. With more than 4,700 members, IEDC is the largest organization of its kind. Economic developers promote economic well-being and quality of life for their communities, by creating, retaining and expanding jobs that facilitate growth, enhance wealth and provide a stable tax base. From public to private, rural to urban, and local to international, IEDC’s members are engaged in the full range of economic development experience. Given the breadth of economic development work, our members are employed in a wide variety of settings including local, state, provincial and federal governments, public-private partnerships, chambers of commerce, universities and a variety of other institutions. IEDC’s members create high-quality jobs, develop vibrant communities and improve the quality of life in their regions. www.iedcONLINE.org.
Located 19 miles inland from the Gulf of Mexico, and less than 2 hours from sea buoy to dock, is North America’s premier break-bulk and bulk terminal, The Port of Port Arthur.
Whether you are in town for business or traveling with family, you will appreciate and enjoy Port Arthur’s proximity to the Gulf and Louisiana. It is Port Arthur’s strategic location on the Texas/Louisiana border that makes it a driving economic force in the region. Throughout history, Port Arthur and Sabine Lake has been an avenue for trade. Since its founding in 1895, the town was envisioned as a center for trade and tourism. By 1957, Port Arthur was known as the center of the world’s prosperous oil refining facilities.
Today, the Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation and industry leaders work together to promote economic growth and quality of life in Port Arthur.
John C. Maxwell, entrepreneur and author of various books on the topic of leadership, stated, “A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way and shows the way. “These traits are embodied in the PAEDC Board of Directors and its CEO, Floyd Batiste.
“The Board encompasses business owners, business managers, educators, and residents, whose common goal is to boost and enable positive economic growth and a better quality of life for all citizens of our community” says Batiste. “As CEO, I work closely with our Board to maintain a vigorous line of communication with businesses.
“Port Arthur’s distinct history includes the petrochemical industry, oil and gas companies, pipe fabrication, steel making, warehousing, distribution, manufacturing, and government services. “Our community has a diversified and talented workforce, and this makes us an attractive location for potential commercial businesses” according to Batiste. “When you connect these factors with the City Planning and Zoning Board’s willingness to expedite land development applications, an exceptional transportation network and a utility infrastructure that is always being improved; it gives Port Arthur an upper hand when competing in the marketplace for new business.
“Port Arthur is in the early stages of a modern day economic boom with several large projects involving the energy infrastructure are underway or proposed, the two largest being the Golden Pass and Sabine Pass LNG terminals. Over the past several years, many companies have decided to build in the community and call Port Arthur their home. Reliable Polymer Services (RPS), SETPOINT, Lockwood International, PENTAIR, Team Fabricators, Tyco Wilfire, MPW Industrial Water Services, JZ Russell Industries, Triangle Waste Solutions, Bio Medical Waste, Dashiell Dacon, just to name a few.
The staff and leadership of Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation are available to assist you with economic incentives and hard work to make every effort to help your business grow.
Port Arthur’s proximity to the Gulf not only makes it one of Texas’ leading seaports, it also makes it a mecca for outdoor adventure. Nature lovers and sportsmen can head to the beaches, wetlands or waterways for fun or some of the best fishing and hunting in the region. Other area attractions include the Museum of the Gulf Coast with its Jurassic to Joplin depiction of the history of the area. As well as several historic homes, the Queen of Peace Shrine and Gardens and Pleasure Island.
With a mild climate and a supercharged business atmosphere, Port Arthur can help you attain your goals and enjoy life while doing it.
The Port of Port Arthur is positioned to efficiently and effectively handle any type of cargo from forest products, steel, project, and military to name a few. The Port of Port Arthur is the ultimate direct transfer facility for international cargo shipping and in the year 2000 an expansion that included all the operating features demanded by the maritime industry.
Less than two hours from sea to transit, the Port of Port Arthur is North America’s ultimate direct transfer facility positioned on the Gulf of Mexico to competitively handle any type of commodity.
The forest products industry wanted and got the finest transit shed to protect newsprint, linerboard, wood pulp, paperboard, plywood and lumber. To give them what they wanted, we not only duplicated the superior quality of our existing shed – we added extra-large hanger type doors (36 ft. wide X 24 ft. high); state of the art lighting for ’round-the-clock safe traffic; an enclosed rail and truck apron for all-weather operations; and a storm water drain system throughout the apron dock that includes 36 ft. X 12 ft. door gratings.
The metals industry wanted more open storage and rail accommodations. What they got was an extension of the existing 50 car dockside capacity to 150 rail cars for direct transfer; and asphalt surfaced open storage up to 18 acres.
Need RoRo capability? You’ve got it – 80 ft. wide with direct rail transfer if needed. When you are tallying up all our assets, remember to include high security that is built into the system that makes the Port of Port Arthur the ultimate direct transfer facility and finest forest products transit terminal in North America.
Truck Transportation: Convenient access to interstate highways. Port Equipment: The Port is equipped to handle any type breakbulk general cargo, including, but not limited to: forest products; iron and steel products; dry bulk cargoes; project and military cargo; and bagged and bailed goods.
The Port is connected to the KCS Railroad providing direct intermodal service to and from major markets of the United States and Canada.
This article is courtesy of the FDI Alliance
The arrival of Pure in Port Arthur is not only a huge boost for job creation; it begins the process of diversifying the local economy away from the petrochemical industry.
The decision by Pure to locate its global launch facility in Port Arthur is indicative of the economic and technological emergence of the south-east Texas region, as well as the importance of the leading educational institutions located in the city that provide crucial training. Pure is thus creating a culture of entrepreneurship that will put Port Arthur on the global map and inspire others to build businesses in the region too. European CEO spoke to Floyd Batiste, CEO of the Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation, about what this means for the city.
How will Pure transform the local economy in Port Arthur?
‘Game changer’, ‘transformational’, ‘monumental’ and ‘landmark’ are some of the terms I would use to describe the announcement that Pure will build a textile and manufacturing facility in Port Arthur. Pure is expected to create 500 direct jobs and pump $260m in capital investment into our local economy. It certainly will change the economic and educational landscape of Port Arthur forever.
Within the last ten years, Port Arthur has seen exceptional economic development, due to the construction of three LNG facilities, and the expansion of Valero and Total, as well as that of Motiva Enterprise, which is now the largest refinery in North America. As a result, many large companies, such as MPW, Tyco Willfire, Setpoint and Lockwood International, have since relocated or established offices and shops in Port Arthur.
CNN Money ranked the city first for percentage of new jobs created. How was this accomplished?
The trend of expansion in the petrochemical industry began five or six years ago, as emerging markets in India, China and Brazil began to tip the supply and demand scale. In 2007, Motiva expanded its refinery, which more than doubled its production capacity and created 300 new permanent jobs. In 2008, Valero began the company’s largest-ever capital investment project, a $2.4bn expansion at its Port Arthur refinery, which generated up to 1,500 new construction jobs. Then, in 2011, Total Petrochemicals invested $2.2bn and had around 2,200 people working on the project.
How is setting up made cost-effective for businesses looking to move to the area?
On-site and classroom training programs are provided by the Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation, in partnership with the local Community College, Lamar State College Port Arthur, Port Arthur ISD and the local Workforce Solutions. In addition, the city’s One-Stop Shop consolidates the process of land development into a single location, acting as the primary intake and payment point for building permitting, most licensing applications, and over-the-counter construction permits.
What do the city’s business parks offer for investors?
The Port Arthur Business Park has easy access to the I-10 interchange, which connects to all of the major interstate trucking routes, while a regional airport serves most major cities in the US and the rest of the world.
In order to entice development that is compatible with the community’s goals and objectives, the Port Arthur Economic Development Board has undertaken an aggressive programme for infrastructure and amenities development. This strategy aims to provide high quality industrial and business park sites to prospective developers and tenants, which will support existing interests, as well as diversify the area’s economic base.
What challenges has the city faced in fostering economic development and how were they overcome?
Despite a surplus of workers, there are currently many job openings that cannot be filled because of a mismatch between the required skills and those available in the local workforce. Although there is a high demand for metalworkers and welders, for example, there are simply not enough skilled workers to fill these jobs.
In response, the Port Arthur ISD is actively creating a curriculum that ensures students are ready to join an innovative, 21st-century workforce when they graduate. Additionally, the Community College has implemented a workforce training department, which is partnered with local businesses. Our goal is to continue tackling these challenges in ways that achieve long-term, sustainable economic growth, as well as create new jobs and new capital investments.
Cited July 2015 edition of FDI Alliance
RaNoda – what inspired you to bring your marketing expertise to Port Arthur?
Being a native of Port Arthur, Texas a town with the population of about 55,000 residents and a skilled workforce. I chose to bring my Marketing expertise to the community I was raised in and a community I love. Port Arthur, Texas is ideally a great location to live, work, and play.
Port Arthur is known to the world as the largest petrochemical area with MOTIVA refinery being the #1 refinery in North America–However, Port Arthur, Texas has so much more to offer to the world. Port Arthur is 90 miles from the 4th largest city in the world (Houston, Texas), 10 miles from the Gulf of Mexico, 30 minutes from the Louisiana state line, has a Regional Airport, 300-acre Industrial Business Park, an International Port with crane access and easy access to interstate 10.
Port Arthur is a mecca waiting to explode because we can definitely BUILD IT, SHIP IT and RAIL IT.
Tell us about your award at the IEDC annual conference in Texas last year and why were you victorious?
Last year, I entered into the IEDC’s Excellence in Economic Development Awards Showcase with the hopes to really expose Port Arthur. The results were amazing, I was honored to receive the silver award in the category of Paid Advertising Campaign for Population 25,000-200,000. This was a huge success for my city as well as my CEO and his Board of Directors.
The project is a paid advertising campaign with focus on Site Selector Magazines and Billboards in the Houston, Texas market. This advertising campaign was created in order for the City of Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation to attract both regional and global decision RaNoda McClain-Lee Marketing Manager/Business Recruitment Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation makers such as site selectors and business consultant’s; especially those in the logistics industry to Port Arthur, Texas.
The goal was to raise awareness of what Port Arthur has to offer and why companies should consider relocating or moving to our community. In 2013, the Port Arthur Economic Development Board of Directors added my position as Marketing Manager to its personnel to accomplish this task, knowing that small businesses are the engine that drives Port Arthur’s economy, and aids in helping to create the kinds of jobs and opportunities that are so necessary to our continuous community growth.
Supplementing the campaign advertisement Build It, Ship It, Rail It in Port Arthur, Texas was emphasis on our local business attraction using social media outlets, including Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram.
What strategies do you have in place to attract International Trade to Port Arthur in the next 3 years?
The strategies I currently have in place to attract International Trade to Port Arthur is to continue to market globally, attend conferences, trade shows, and forums, and build solid working relationships with investors, site selectors, and consultants on why Port Arthur is the #1 location to relocate or build a business. Relationship building is about 80% of Economic Development success.
RaNoda as the Marketing arm of your organization how important is it to attend conferences and events and meet site selectors?
It is extremely important to attend conferences and events in order to meet the investors, the site sectors and the consultants because that one on one conversation and relationship building is key to landing your next business or prospect. As I stated in the question above…relationship building is vital and a huge percentage in the economic development world.
RaNoda briefly outline your educational background and why you chose Marketing as your passion?
I graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School in Port Arthur, Texas with High Honors and continued my education at Lamar University- Beaumont where I obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration Degree with a concentration in Management Information Systems and Marketing.
I worked for the #1 brand in the world Coca-Cola Refreshments for eight years and in doing so I was trained to sell the portfolio, develop and expand my territory, and market the brand Coca-Cola which is recognized globally.
Marketing is definitely my passion because I feel it takes a special someone to cultivate, market and brand a community.
RaNoda how important is it to continuously reinvent the wheel to showcase Port Arthur as Texas’s number one Investment destination?
It is very important to reinvent the wheel because the world is steadily and endlessly changing. What may be relevant today, may not be relevant five to seven years from now or even tomorrow. You have to keep new ideas coming in, you have to stay relevant on social media, in the magazines, or even a billboard…the key to success is to market and brand daily and build those ideal relationships.
You have to keep it new, fresh and sleek.
BUILD IT, SHIP IT, RAIL IT in Port Arthur.
The Texas petrochemical industry is booming. Houston is doing excellent business, but the same is true of nearby Port Arthur, a growing city with a reputation for supporting and welcoming investors.
Thanks to the strong petrochemical industry in the US, many businesses are flocking to those states that have seen the most activity in oil and gas. In particular, Texas is leading the way, with major oil and gas hubs in Houston. However, a short trip east along the coast will find a burgeoning port city set to rival its bigger neighbor.
Port Arthur has steadily grown over the last decade, welcoming international businesses that cater for the petrochemical industry. With a first-class infrastructure and education system, Port Arthur is attracting considerable interest worldwide. The Port Arthur Economic Development Corporation was formed to oversee this growth. European CEO caught up with the group’s CEO, Floyd Batiste, to find out why this city is proving to be so attractive to businesses.
Is Port Arthur’s educational base working well with the petrochemical companies in the area?
Because the petrochemical industry has been in place here for some time, our workforce builds, operates and maintains its refineries. That takes a lot of skill. We have local colleges, including Lamar State College and the Lamar Institute of Technology, which focus on training people for the industry. It’s a good fit with the local universities, as they tailor their courses to the needs of the industry.
We actually have an industrial group that sits down with the educators and makes them aware of their needs.
How developed is the city’s infrastructure?
I think Port Arthur is the best-kept secret in the world. We have a port that the federal government has approved to be expanded and deepened to 48ft, where it can bring in larger ships. We have a rail system, the I-10 highway, and we’re only 90 miles from Houston International Airport. We also have a local airport that connects to Houston and Dallas. It makes us a good place to be.
The potential has still not been realized, though. I think it’s because we’re a small community. What you hear about is Houston and Dallas – the big metropolitan zones. However, to get into Houston port, sometimes ships have to sit out for 14 to 21 days, whereas they’re only 28 miles on the water from Port Arthur, so could get it done in a day. I’m receiving calls from the Houston market. We’re trying to get the word out to global businesses that we can make it more convenient and time-efficient; we are here and we have the infrastructure.
What business facilities are there in Port Arthur?
We have a 300-acre business park complete with all the infrastructure businesses need. 10 years ago there was nothing there, but today there are about 15 different international businesses. We have focused on our primary customers in the petrochemical industry. Port Arthur EDC is considering purchasing an additional 200 acres of land, because currently the 300 acres we have is being taken up, and will soon have very few vacancies.
How will Port Arthur EDC support the growth of businesses that invest in the city?
Because of the expansion of industry in our area, the service industry has picked up a lot, especially in retail. Ten years ago we had three or four hotels, today we have about 15. That’s from demand. There’s growth in the retail and service sectors, reflecting the prosperity of the area. One of the things Port Arthur EDC is doing is providing incentives to businesses that relocate in our community. We have three factors we look at: capital investment brought to the community, job creation, and wages.