Arizona Commerce Authority Launches Certified Sites Program Specifically Supporting Business Expansion in Rural Arizona

Online Portal to Provide Go-To Resource for Site Selection in Rural Communities, Enhances Visibility of Rural Sites that are Ready for Business and Available Statewide

PHOENIX (September 12, 2013) – The Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA) today announced the launch of its Certified Sites program that will enhance the visibility of commercial sites in rural Arizona that are ready for business and available for base industry employers. The Certified Sites program is part of a suite of ACA programs and services focused on advancing economic development throughout the state.

Certified sites and buildings represent an established set of minimum real estate standards among national site selection consultants, corporate real estate professionals and companies seeking to expand or that need a new business location. Commercial sites in metropolitan areas are already categorized and widely promoted; certifying comparable sites in rural Arizona through this ACA program will serve rural communities by enhancing their ability to compete for quality employers. Arizona will become one of five states in the western U.S., joining California, Oregon, Nevada and Utah, which have implemented similar programs.

“The ACA is committed to creating economic opportunity for rural Arizona, and our Certified Sites program provides a strategic solution for attracting more business expansions to these important areas,” said Sandra Watson, President and CEO, Arizona Commerce Authority. “By marketing the business assets of Arizona’s rural communities, we will enhance long-term competitiveness and job growth potential.”

Participants may register any number of sites on azcommerce.com/programs/certified-sites. If a site achieves certified status under the program, it is designated and marketed as an Arizona Certified Site or Arizona Certified Building.

The ACA’s online portal will showcase land and existing building sites in rural communities that exhibit the ability to most immediately accommodate operations for base industry employers. It will also provide detailed information on the certification level of the site/building, key attributes, a location map, community profile and the site’s readiness for development or occupancy. All sites with a Gold certification level will be actively displayed to prospective companies and site selection brokers seeking locations for business expansion in Arizona.

“It is essential that Arizona’s rural communities are able to deliver an expansive portfolio of certified sites to effectively compete for, and respond to the needs and expectations of potential employers,” said Julie Pastrick, Chair of the ACA’s Rural Business Development Advisory Council. “Providing a turnkey way for the rural economic development community to promote its sites to companies seeking to expand will help create long-term employment opportunities and industry growth across Arizona.”

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Media Contact:

Joseph Valdez, Director, Communications and Community Affairs

Arizona Commerce Authority

602.845.1234 or josephv@azcommerce.com

About the Arizona Commerce Authority

The Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA) is the state’s leading economic development organization with a streamlined mission to grow and strengthen Arizona’s economy.  The ACA uses a three-pronged approach to advance the overall economy: Recruit, Grow, Create – Recruit out-of-state companies to expand their operations in Arizona; work with existing companies to grow their business in Arizona and beyond; and partner with entrepreneurs and companies large and small to create new jobs and businesses in targeted industries. Visit AzCommerce.com for more.

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