From the Spring Valley EDA Director
Dear Spring Valley Community:
2020 has indeed been a year like no other, filled with challenges, obstacles, and challenges. Our community continues to navigate COVID-19. The Spring Valley EDA continues to work with our businesses and organizations, to adapt and invest in our community to ensure a successful future. The Spring Valley Economic Development Authority (EDA) has collaborated with our local partners, businesses, and organizations to identify needs and develop solutions for the Spring Valley Community.
The EDA started 2020 by approving a $60,000 EDA loan to establish the new Stellar 181 Taphouse, now scheduled to open in 2021. This project is a unique collaboration. The Stellar 181 Taphouse plans to offer a limited hot food menu from a new kitchen installed in the adjacent “Some Like It Hot” catering business. Together, these businesses will offer a unique dining and gathering experience, either as a combined space or individually in historic downtown Spring Valley.
During the initial Governor ordered the shutdown, the EDA offered three-month loan deferrals on existing EDA loans to help local businesses cope with the lack of revenue. Upon the release of the Federal CARES Act funding to Minnesota Communities, and with the support of the Spring Valley City Council, the EDA allocated $20,000 of City CARES Act funding and created a Small Business Relief Grant program. This program awarded nine grants totaling $18,000 to Spring Valley businesses affected by COVID-19.
Child care providers were also adversely affected by COVID-19 this year. Ensuring that Spring Valley has quality sustainable child care remains a priority for the Spring Valley EDA. The EDA assisted one daycare provider who received a $2,500 Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation (SMIF) grant to expand her curriculum. Additionally, the EDA built upon a $3,000 grant from the Spring Valley Area Community Foundation to develop a Child Care Micro-Grant program that awarded $12,000 to local, in-home daycare providers. These funds were used to develop and update both facilities and curriculum.
Spring Valley was also showcased during the 2020 Regional Development Tour, developed by Community and Economic Development Associates (CEDA). A video showcasing the Spring Valley Community, its businesses, assets, quality of life and opportunities was produced and premiered at the Regional Development Tour Annual Event, held virtually this year. This video will be available on a new EDA website scheduled to go live in January of 2021.
One ongoing opportunity is “co-working” (or multiple people working remotely at one location). This concept is increasingly popular as more workers are allowed to work remotely, and not necessarily from home. The EDA developed a Co-working Survey to assess this concept’s interest in Spring Valley and is currently working with local property owners to build a pilot program.
2021 will offer some unique and exciting opportunities for Spring Valley, several of which are well underway.
Currently, the EDA is developing a brand-new Spring Valley EDA Website. The website will offer information, tools, resources, and links to assist Spring Valley businesses, local organizations, current residents, and people looking to relocate to Spring Valley. The site will offer our local businesses an updated business registry, free listings for local business space available for sale, lease or rent, and EDA loan and financial incentive information for companies looking to establish or relocate to Spring Valley.
Current Spring Valley residents will find news articles and press releases regarding local actives, programs and events, a Facebook tracker for both the Discover Spring Valley and City of Spring Valley Facebook pages, and a calendar of events happening in the community. For people looking to relocate to Spring Valley, the website will offer a residential real estate search function, housing incentive information, developer information for our affordable housing initiative, and a searchable business listing, and contact information for the EDA, utilities and other city resources.
Improving broadband service and accessibility continues to be an opportunity for Spring Valley. The EDA is currently contacting Broadband and Digital Communications service providers to address the growing demand for current and reliable broadband in our community and develop a plan for improvement.
Spring Valley will also welcome several new businesses in 2021. A new bakery is planned for the old funeral home property on Highway 63. The Valley Butchery is planning to expand. Stellar 181 Taphouse intends to open this summer once the COVID restrictions are eased. Kwik Trip will be building on the old BP station at the corner of Highway 63 & 16. Additionally, the EDA currently is working with several businesses to relocate to Spring Valley.
Lastly, the Spring Valley EDA believes that small businesses are an essential part of our growing community. Investment in these businesses represents a long-term investment in the Spring Valley community.
Wishing everyone a safe, joyful and successful 2021,
EDA Director, City of Spring Valley, MN