Originally Published in The Herald Star
April 24, 2019
By Craig Howell
WEIRTON – Area business representatives and government officials will get a better idea of where the Ohio Valley could be heading as part of an economic outlook conference being held today in Weirton.
Approximately 50 individuals are expected to attend the even set to begin at 5 p.m. at Williams Golf and Country Club.
It will be hosted by the Business Development Corp. of the Northern Panhandle, the Weirton Area Chamber of Commerce and the city of Weirton.
As part of the conference, a group of economics majors from West Virginia University will present their analysis of the business climate of Hancock and Brooke counties, as well as where they believe the area could be heading.
“Their data sets, we use in all our forecasts,” Pat Ford, executive director of the BDC, said, noting it is important for residents and businesses to see the direction of growth predicted for the region. “We have all these major investments, major announcements, all the hiring.”
The WVU students look at current economic conditions, along with the types of businesses and industries in operation, then analyze potential opportunities based on market trends and available investment opportunities.
The event is being held with support from Southwestern Energy, the Thrasher Group, the Frontier Group of Companies, United Bank and Fairfield Inn by Marriott.
Because of the proximity and connectivity of the Northern Panhandle to neighboring states, Ford said the presentation will include information from parts of Ohio and Pennsylvania as well as Brooke and Hancock counties.
“They give us a more holistic view,” Ford explained.
Similar presentations have been held for other areas of the state, Ford noted.