Building On Strength

City of Lancaster Economic Development Strategic Plan

Project Overview & Purpose

In 2014 the Lancaster City Alliance developed a 15-year economic development plan for the City of Lancaster to enhance the community’s quality of life and ensure economic growth. Lancaster entered into this planning process from a position of advantage, largely the result of the successes of the previous Lancaster Economic Development Action Agenda (“LDR Plan”), produced in 1998. Therefore, Lancaster has been building on its strengths and creating an environment that fosters growth and development, elevates the economic well-being of the community, and sets a foundation for healthy urban economic development in the future. As we move through the implementation of the plan through 2030, Building On Strength is expected to evolve and be adapted to work in harmony with other community plans.

In 2018, the recommendations of the plan were recalibrated in response to changing circumstances, and reflect an additional emphasis on the following:

§  Affordable and mixed-income housing development

§  Alignment with the goals and strategies of the One Good Job poverty reduction plan adopted in 2016

§  More efficient transportation options for travel within the City

§  Better defining the entrepreneurial ecosystem

§  Marketing to residential developers and a growing consumer base

Building On Strength Plan Lays a Firm Foundation, Looks to the Future

As the community approaches the half-way point of the 15-year plan, implementation partners have gathered to review the plan's four main strategies and are asking several big questions to guide the next seven years.

The following are the five big questions. They include:

  • What is the one plan aspiration we are currently meeting and what are the ones that we are not meeting? 
  • What do we need to readjust within the strategy of this plan?
  • Within the next year, what should be our number one priority within each strategy?
  • How do we better integrate the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion into the plan?
  • What groups, partnerships, and opportunities are missing from the plan?

We have also taken the opportunity to celebrate the plan’s remarkable success, identify challenges, and adapt the plan to our changing world. You can review each of those things here. Building on Strength was always meant to be flexible, which has been a key to the plan’s success, it was recalibrated at the end of year three and again as a result of the pandemic. As we move closer to the second half of Building on Strength implementation we look forward to sharing how the plan will reflect the needs of our community. 

Tracking the Building On Strength Plan

Building On Strength Outcome Dashboard and Privately Led Investment Chart

As of the end of September 2021, privately led investment, a key outcome of the Building On Strength plan, completed, under construction, planned, and conceptual since July 1, 2015 exceeds the 2030 goal of $1 billion, at more than $1.23 billion. Importantly, new investment occurring outside of the Downtown Core exceeds investment in Downtown. More than $826 million occurring along the City’s key corridors and other key focus areas of the plan (“commercial hubs”) as well as at other key sites in the City (ex: former St. Joseph Hospital Campus).

The “Privately Led Investment by Commercial Hub and Phase of Development” dashboard illustrates the amount of investment by area. The Train Station Area is now represented on this dashboard for the first time, following the recent announcement of the proposed $48 million redevelopment of the Stockyard Inn site at Lititz Pike/Marshall Avenue.