City of Kyle (TX) – Economic Development Strategic Plan

The Challenge. Due to its close proximity to Austin and location on I-35, Kyle is in the enviable position of being “in the path of growth.” The community’s strategic location and an abundance of available sites offer residents and businesses the ability to establish themselves along the booming Austin-San Antonio corridor, one of the fastest growing regions in the nation. To date, however, the bulk of Kyle’s growth has been limited to residential development, which is expected to continue as thousands of new houses are planned. The resulting challenge for the community is influencing land-use decisions to ensure that key parcels are reserved for new developments that bring employment opportunities and non-residential tax dollars to Kyle.

The Approach. Recognizing these challenges, the City of Kyle hired TIP to assist in crafting a new economic development strategic plan as a response. Our methodology included an assessment of relevant regional and local economic and demographic trends affecting Kyle as well as an analysis of its real estate market. This resulted in the development of a strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats matrix (SWOT) to determine the community’s options for increasing its tax base. Once Kyle’s long- and short-term opportunities were assessed, TIP conducted research on various benchmarks to provide best practice lessons on how the community could take advantage of its assets.

The Outcome. TIP recommended short- and long-term economic development strategies with specific action steps for Kyle to leverage its assets and maximize its opportunities. Short-term economic projects included: 1) modifications to the city’s land-use regulations and annexation policies, 2) a new marketing and branding campaign to promote the city as an emerging employment center for the Austin region’s southern tier, 3) continuing to revitalize Kyle’s historic downtown, 4) conducting a healthcare recruitment campaign to leverage a recent hospital announcement, and 5) developing a modern, fully-developed business park to attract new employers. Long-term strategies included: 1) improving transportation connectivity throughout Kyle to prevent traffic congestion as the city grows, 2) conducting a sustained marketing campaign to raise awareness of office development opportunities in Kyle, especially within close proximity to a proposed commuter rail station, and 3) consider the collaborative development of a higher education center to provide local career advancement opportunities to local and area residents.

TIP Contact Tom Stellman