For more than four decades, business leaders have reaped healthy returns by investing in the Fredericksburg Region.
The reasons behind the area’s lure of national and international businesses are no surprise: a pro-business climate, a desirable location between Washington, D.C. and Richmond, Virginia and swift access to major markets make this a perfect locale to start, expand or relocate a business.
Prime office, commercial and industrial spaces are available, as are large tracts of land for the creation of new enterprises in areas such as government contracting, communications and a variety of high-tech start-ups. The region boasts one of America’s most skilled labor pools. The local workforce numbers about 125,000, while nearly 1 million commuters reside within a 40-mile radius of the region.
Education levels surpass the national average. More than 70 percent of area workers are college-educated and have managerial, professional, and technical skills. The region has one of the country’s highest concentrations of doctoral degrees.
The $35 million Stafford Regional Airport, designed for cargo and corporate jet traffic with wingspans of up to 80 feet, has foreign trade zone capability and is now adding a new terminal. It is convenient to commuter rail, and adjacent land is available for those who dream of manufacturing and selling the goods that will fuel the economy of the future.
The Fredericksburg Region’s existing infrastructure includes a high-speed fiber optic telecommunications system that is part of an 18,000-mile national system.
To create a hospitable business environment, state and local governments offer tax credits, free counseling, and financial and technical assistance for start-ups, expansions, and relocations. Economic development professionals acquaint prospective businesses with the area and provide incentives to encourage corporate investment.
University of Mary Washington’s Small Business Development Center, the Fredericksburg Regional Alliance and Germanna Community College work closely with private industry, local governments and educational institutions to move the economy forward. Together they aggressively market the region, recruit new industry, and help existing businesses expand.
The Mason Enterprise Center Spotsylvania is a full-service, small business incubator program that assists local area start-up and emergent businesses that meet certain criteria and want to grow and achieve maximum success. Operated and managed by staff of George Mason University, MECS is a collaborative economic development program supported by Spotsylvania County, Spotsylvania Economic Development Authority and George Mason University.
The Fredericksburg Regional Chamber of Commerce is a networking, marketing, and advocacy resource that provides many benefits to businesses. The Chamber responds to community and business needs as they develop; helps potential buyers, suppliers and collaborators connect with one another and advocates for a continued strong business environment.
With a long tradition of cooperation among the localities, businesses can rely on community leaders to think regionally and consider everybody’s success. Through shared resources, the strengths of each locality become available to businesses throughout the entire region.