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Duluth, MN 55802

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Economic Development Planning
ARDC is the designated planning organization for the Northeast Minnesota Economic Development District. ARDC provides economic development planning assistance to communities in the counties of Aitkin, Carlton, Cook, Itasca, Koochiching, Lake, and St. Louis. ARDC helps communities identify and develop projects that are eligible for federal funding from the Economic Development Administration and other agencies. ARDC also develops a Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) that identifies strategies to strengthen the regional economy.

Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy
The Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) is an economic development plan designed to diversify and strengthen the regional economy. It is required by EDA in order to maintain the regionís status as an Economic Development District.

2016 CEDS
ARDC is undertaking the creation of a 2017-2022 CEDS for Northeast Minnesota, that will guide work and investements for the next five years. The regional CEDS will correspond with the four cornerstones for strong regions and communities (Human Capital, Economic Competitiveness, Community Resources, and Foundational Assets) that were idenfitied in the DevelopMN Plan, created by the Minnesota Association of Development Organizations (MADO). The CEDS will focus in on the region's unique conditions, advantages, and challenges, while following EDA guidelines.

ARDC will engage community stakeholders throughout the Arrowhead Region to participate in an online survey and meetings focused on the four cornerstones for community and economic health.

Click HERE to learn more.

2010 CEDS
The current CEDS was developed in 2010 and has been updated annually to reflect changing regional conditions and needs.

2010 CEDS

2011 CEDS Annual Report

2012 CEDS Annual Report

2013 CEDS Annual Report

Planning and Technical Assistance
ARDC receives an annual grant from the United States Federal Economic Development Administration (EDA) to conduct planning to assist economic development efforts of the region and its communities.

ARDC can assist communities with economic development strategies and programs and assessment of a projectís eligibility for EDA funding.

2013 Economic Development Planning Midpoint Progress Report

Go...Cook County
ARDC is currently working with The Northspan Group to assist the Cook County community to create and implement a community supported economic development vision for the County. More information on this project can be viewed HERE.

Koochiching County-International Falls Economic Adjustment Strategy
In May 2013, Koochiching County and the City of International Falls learned that their largest employer, the Boise Inc. paper mill, would shut down part of its operations and permanently reduce its workforce by 265 people. ARDC immediately became involved in the response and recovery efforts by attending meetings with the public, local leaders, and state and federal officials to offer its assistance as the Economic Development District. ARDC is the lead applicant for a pending EDA Economic Adjustment Assistance application that will implement an 18 month economic adjustment program.

Revolving Loan Fund
The ARDC Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) is in place to support business activities for which credit is not otherwise available on terms and conditions which would permit completion and/or the successful operation or accomplishment of the project in the seven county region of Northeast Minnesota. The objective of the program is the stimulation of private investment in order to create and maintain productive, permanent employment through the establishment of new businesses or the expansion of existing businesses. Financing provided in conjunction with this program is intended to compliment, not compete with private lending institutions.

For more information or to request an application, contact Bob Palmquist at 218-529-7562.

Click HERE for a loan brochure.

Economic Resiliency
Planning for mitigation and recovery from natural, man-made, and economic disasters is an important facet of improving the economic disasters is an important facet of improving the economic well-being of the regionís residents and protecting public and private investments. ARDC assesses economic resiliency in all its economic development planning.

Northeast Minnesota Flash Flood Disaster Ė Economic Development Impact Study
On June 20th, 2012, northeastern Minnesota experienced a record breaking flash flood resulting in over $100 million in damage to over 1,700 homes and over 100 businesses. Upon the one year anniversary of the flood, ARDC developed a report to assess how the disaster continued to affect local economies and economic development needs and strategies.

Northeast Minnesota Flash Flood Disaster Ė Economic Development Impact Study

Hazard Mitigation Planning
Natural, man-made and economic disasters can adversely affect local economies and the stability of communities. Multi-Hazard MiMitigation Plans (MHMP) support the ability of communities to develop and implement projects that will strengthen them against the impact of disasters. ARDC is currently working on the MHMP updates for Aitkin, Carlton, Itasca and Koochiching Counties.*

*Not funded with support from EDA.

Contact Information
Josh Bergstad
Senior Planner

ph: 218.529.7516

221 West First Street
Duluth, MN 55802

ARDCís economic development planning is supported with funds provided by the United States Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration (EDA).


Regional Planning Division Programs
NE MN Area Transportation Partnership (ATP)
North Shore Management Board (NSMB)
Northern Aero Alliance
Healthy Northland

ARDC Directions
Click HERE for Directions and Parking Information

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