McKinney Economic Development Alliance (TX) – Economic Development Strategic Plan

The Challenge. The City of McKinney, Texas, has an embarrassment of riches. It is consistently rated as one of the most desirable places to live in the county. It enjoys easy access to Dallas and DFW airport. It has an authentic downtown, high quality housing options and a strong school district. In fact, McKinney has remained an ideal location for growth in the Metroplex, with a distinct identity and unparalleled opportunities. These advantages, however, are no guarantee of future success. Competition among the Metroplex suburbs to attract businesses and retail is fierce. After an engagement with the McKinney Economic Development Corporation in 2007, TIP was hired by the city to explore specific development options and lay out a long term plan for new business growth.

The Approach. The city hired TIP Strategies to craft a new economic development strategic plan that would identify specific “opportunity zones” within the community. These areas would benefit from targeted investment from the EDC as well as from the city and other financial sources. TIP assembled a team that considered not only economic effects, but also planning and design elements, retail growth, and the role of the airport. In addition, a new target industry list was created and a new organizational model for economic development was prepared. This effort was led by a newly formed McKinney Economic Development Alliance that included the mayor, city council members, the chamber, the EDC, and other boards and interested individuals.

The Outcome. The result of an intense year-long effort was a detailed assessment of specific sites and development options, a fresh retail analysis, new target industries for recruitment, an entrepreneurship strategy, and a retail assessment. This plan will work to 1) re-energize and coordinate economic development city-wide; 2) advance cluster development through entrepreneurship and targeted business recruitment; and 3) enhance McKinney’s quality of place and talent pool.