Bucks National Trends
Lincoln will see over $1 billion in investment over the next several years. This is in addition to recent expansions by companies such
as Fiserv, Dell Services, Assurity Life Insurance, and Verizon Wireless.
“I can’t remember a time in the history of this community where
there is so much enthusiasm about the future,” says Wendy Birdsall,
president of the Lincoln Chamber of Commerce. “The completed
and planned expansion in the private sector combined with
public–private investments in university and community projects is
The most recent good news for the community came this spring
with the announcement of the construction of a new 16,000-seat
arena in the West Haymarket near downtown and the University of
Nebraska-Lincoln. The facility will be home to Cornhusker basketball
and well as concerts and other community events.
Lincoln voters approved the required financing to move forward
on the $344 million project that will also include a new ice center
and a $100 million hotel, office, and condo development.
The arena is part of over $1 billion of new investment planned in
the downtown area alone, including a new 250-acre research campus
for the University of Nebraska, new corporate headquarter facilities
for Assurity Life Insurance
and Farmers Mutual, and a
new LEED Neighborhood.
Construction is beginning this year on UNL’s new
research campus, which is expected to attract private and public
investment in research and innovation activities. Over 2,000 new jobs
are expected to be created at the park over the next 10 to 15 years.
The arena and research campus were part of a plan released in
2007 by a group of community business leaders. Dubbed Vision
2015, the group has achieved approval and funding of the majority
of their goals, including the arena and research park, as well as a new
art museum. The goal of the group of leaders was to create a more
vibrant community to attract and retain talent to the community.
“The key to creating new economy jobs in Lincoln is for us to create a sense of place that retains our best and brightest,” Birdsall says.
Lincoln is the education center of the state of Nebraska, with around
40,000 higher education students in the community each year.
But the planning doesn’t stop there.
According to Jason Smith, vice president of economic development for the Lincoln Chamber, the community is committing
resources to establishing the required infrastructure to attract manufacturing as well.
Building on the success of companies such as Kawasaki, Molex,
Novartis, Pfizer, and Teledyne, Lincoln is in the final stages of developing or redeveloping over 2,000 acres for advanced manufacturing, as well as alternative energy and food production.
Smith says successes like Kawasaki’s light rail car plant, which
produces cars for transit systems in New York, New Jersey, and
Washington, proves that Lincoln’s positive attributes of low energy
costs and skilled workers provide a great platform to not only thrive
in the innovation arena, but for production as well.
Lincoln Area Development Partnership
Vice President, Economic Development
1135 M Street, Suite 200
Lincoln, NE 68506
Phone: (402) 436-2373
Fax: (402) 436-2360