Apalachee RPC Revolving Loan Fund
In the fall of 2016, the Apalachee RPC, using its Revolving Loan Fund program, invested in the expansion of Pretty Girlz, a small women’s clothing boutique in Blountstown, Florida located in Calhoun County. Loan proceeds allowed the owner to purchase and renovate a long-time vacant downtown building and more than double its capacity for inventory as well as the creation of four new full-time jobs.
Despite the high-risk nature of retail businesses in rural communities, Pretty Girlz is thriving in its new location and since the expansion gross sales have tripled. Through the use of a creative social media marketing campaign, the owner continues to draw clientele from over a 50-mile radius and has been a torch-bearer for the downtown improvement initiatives of the Blountstown Main Street program. Bay County’s prestigious Holly Fair held annually in November, has announced that it will be featuring Pretty Girlz of Blountstown as its top new business at the 2017 show.
Coast-To-Coast Trail Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
On July 20, 2017, the Tampa Bay RPC attended the ribbon cutting ceremony for the recently completed five mile segment of the Coast-To-Coast recreational trail which will ultimately connect a network of pre-existing trail segments across the state of Florida.
Once completed, the project will create a 250 mile multi-use trail connecting downtown St. Petersburg on the west coast to Titusville on the east coast of Florida. This initial five mile segment connects the Pinellas Trail to the Pasco County line located in Tarpon Springs. The Tampa Bay RPC has been involved in the development and planning of the Coast-To-Coast trail working with numerous transportation partners around the state. The ribbon cutting ceremony was led by Pinellas County Commissioner Chair & Tampa Bay RPC Vice-Chair Janet Long, Pinellas and Pasco County Commissioners, along with other local leaders from the Tampa Bay region. The Coast-To-Coast Trail will have a major economic impact for the state and is expected to entice visitors from all around the world.
Regional Planning Councils Win National Awards
Seven of the ten Florida Regional Planning Councils were recently recognized for outstanding projects by the National Association of Development Organizations (NADO) The following regional planning councils received NADO Innovation Awards:
Apalachee RPC – Chattahoochee to Bristol Trail Feasibility Study
Central Florida RPC
- Avon Park Air Force Range Joint Land Use Study Public Awareness Videos
- Greater Auburndale JPA Overlay District Land Development Regulations
East Central Florida RPC
- The Route Condition Tool
- Delivered Justice Full-Scale Exercise
- Kissimmee Medical Arts District Program
North Central Florida RPC – Experience North Florida by Bicycle
South Florida RPC – Infrastructure Protection Resources: Improving the Planning Process to Protect Infrastructure Emerging from Coastal Hazards
Treasure Coast RPC – Village of Tequesta U.S. 1 Master Plan and Complete Streets Project
West Florida RPC
- rideOn Commuter Services
- Emerald Coast Transportation Symposium
For more complete information about these projects visit the NADO website at: https://www.nado.org/congratulations-to-the-2017-nado-innovation-award-winners/