Anoka County, along with Washington County, Connexus Energy and other regional partners, have launched the Minnesota Technology Corridor, which is an initiative to attract companies to the north metro that can utilize the high energy capacity, high bandwidth, available land and talented workforce available in the area.
At the center of this effort is new website mntechcorridor.com. This site has detailed information about this area that notes why the region is primed for new business development, especially in the technology industry. There are 1,000-plus acres of land available in the corridor, greater than 200-megawatt power capacity with 100 percent renewable battery storage options, significant water/sewer capacity, and many access points to fiber-optic lines from multiple providers. The website also has a site selector component, which serves to direct visitors to various-sized sites within the corridor, including five “premier sites” that range in size from 10 to 250-plus acres.
The other partners in this initiative are Great River Energy, Xcel Energy, Comcast, CenturyLink, Zayo, Arvig, MIDCO, Parallel Technologies, and the cities of Columbus, Centerville, Lino Lakes, Hugo and Forest Lake.
“This private/public partnership will be a great economic driver for our region,” Scott Schulte, chair of the Anoka County Board of Commissioners, said in a press release. “I think businesses that come to our area will find sites that fit their needs and easy-to-work-with government officials and staff who are readily available to answer questions and help businesses succeed.”
The next steps for the MN Technology Corridor Partnership will be to present this information to stakeholders that will champion business development in this corridor. Those stakeholders include the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, Greater MSP, site selectors and commercial real estate brokers. The corridor partners are also working to complete an analysis of the premier sites through a rigorous project-ready checklist to prepare for project requests.