Many positive developments are taking place in Waterbury as we advance our economic development strategy with public and private investments that are yielding solid returns. This is evidenced by the many new businesses choosing to locate in Waterbury, resulting in the creation of hundreds of jobs.
The years 2012 through the beginning of 2019 have seen the establishment of 90 new businesses, and the creation of 2,800 jobs guided by the dynamic leadership of Mayor Neil M. O’Leary and his economic development team. More than 20 new companies have expanded, creating an additional 275 jobs. In addition, we have been home to several new construction projects that have created an additional 300 jobs.
In total, that’s over 3,300 new jobs in the City of Waterbury!
In December 2018, Post University moved their center for online graduate classes, administrative offices, and Information Technology (IT) Center to the newly renovated Howland Hughes Building. This move alone brought 415 new jobs to downtown Waterbury. Post’s move, along with the 100-bed dormitory Green Hub Developers opened in the historic Brown Building next to UConn, will attract more students to downtown.
The newly renovated city green, along with the Mattatuck Museum’s recent announcement that it will undertake an eight million dollar expansion and renovation, continues to speak to the economic vitality of Downtown Waterbury.
Manufacturing in the City of Waterbury continues to grow. MacDermid Performance Solutions, a subsidiary of Platform Specialty Products Corporation, created 120 new jobs at its Waterbury headquarters on Freight Street. These positions include accountants, clericals, human resources, researchers, engineers and executives with salaries ranging from $50,000 to $250,000.
The world’s largest manufacturer of semi conductive wires used in medical-diagnostic systems, Luvata, is an anchor of Waterbury Industrial Commons. Recently Luvata’s Waterbury plant added 40 new full and part time jobs as part of their expansion.
King Industries has completed construction of the first of five state of the art manufacturing buildings at their Chase River Road location. King’s investment in new construction is estimated to exceed $50 million dollars.
Ideal Fish opened its impressive 70,000 square foot facility, becoming the Northeast’s largest indoor salt-water fish farm, producing 350,000 European sea bass per year. This production will provide area residents’ and restaurateurs access to the freshest seafood possible.
In addition to manufacturing, Waterbury has seen a boom of new construction along the recently renovated I-84 corridor. New businesses include Pepe’s Pizza, Texas Roadhouse, Restaurant Depot, Car- Max, and soon, BMW of Waterbury.
Why are these companies choosing Waterbury?
Mayor O’Leary has created a business friendly environment which builds upon the strength of Waterbury’s strategic location at the junction of Interstate 84 and Route 8. We are just two hours from Boston, 90 minutes from New York City and a mere 30-minute commute to Hartford, Bridgeport, New Haven, and Danbury. We have a skilled workforce that combines an old-fashioned New England work ethic with state-of –the-art training in the latest technology.
Our new businesses are a diverse mix of manufacturing, retail, restaurant and professional enterprises, allowing for continued expansion and diversification within the City’s employment base. The strength of retail business in the City starts with a population that exceeds 110,000, and is supported by affluent neighboring communities that depend on our retail base for goods and services.
Waterbury’s award of a $19.5 million TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) grant from the federal government financed a three-phase plan to improve connectivity in the downtown. The first phase of this project was the reconstruction of Freight Street with a “Complete Street” design; it was completed in May 2018. Phases two and three, Jackson Street and Meadow Street improvements are currently out to bid with construction scheduled to begin in May 2019.
Waterbury remains the state’s leader in successful brownfield identification, remediation, and redevelopment. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) honored Mayor Neil O’Leary for his work in brownfield redevelopment and community revitalization in Connecticut’s fifth largest city. Mayor O’Leary was among several winners recognized at the EPA’s 2016 New England Environmental Awards in Boston. The agency honored Mayor O’Leary with its Individual Award for his work in cleaning the sites of the city’s industrial past, restoring the sites as usable taxable property. Mayor O’Leary, the city’s Department of Economic Development, and the Waterbury Development Corporation will continue to target projects for review and remediation in coming years. Some of the administrations priority projects for 2019 are Anamet, Risdon, Bristol Babcock, 130 Freight Street, and the completion of 313 Mill Street.
The bottom line, as Mayor O’Leary says, is, “Waterbury is open for business.”