Economic Development Strategic Plan

In November 2016, the Saginaw Mayor and City Council became agents of change from the previous "inactive" Economic Development philosophy to a "proactive" Economic Development philosophy. The City Council and City Administration met with an Economic Development Consultant to develop an Economic Development Plan, a SWOT Analysis and to move forward making Economic Development an “essential priority” in Saginaw, Texas. Below are the results of this monumental meeting:
City Council Vision Statement
Saginaw leverages its location and history to attract destination businesses and family-oriented, visual entertainment centers, dining establishments and amenities—that lead our citizens to stay and play here and neighbors to come and experience our character.

City Council Mission Statement
The Saginaw City Council recognizes the importance of (and seeks to preserve) Saginaw’s small-town feel, as well as the need to increase mobility, capitalize on Saginaw’s location, and redevelop Saginaw Boulevard.

Goals & Objectives

Capitalize on Saginaw’s great location, good schools, and small town, family-oriented feel
  • Capitalize on Saginaw’s great location, good schools, and small town, family-oriented feel by targeting, attracting and facilitating several unique places and destination businesses—where people can hang out and experience Saginaw.
    • Recognize how restaurants are becoming the new anchor for retail:
      • Encourage and reward (through incentives, reduced fees and/or expedited permitting) restaurant patios with shade and landscaping;
      • Approach chefs and incentivize new concepts across or near grain elevators;
      • Establish a farmer’s market and/or community garden to generate fresh produce—to the benefit of chefs (to help generate a chef-driven restaurant atmosphere).
    • Research and focus on certain concepts that attract others and are known for being student-friendly establishments and places of employment, consistent with a hometown like Saginaw. Hire a consulting firm to prepare a Merchandising Plan which summarizes Greater Saginaw market and identifies the best retailers and restaurants to target.
    • Identify the best building along or in close proximity to Saginaw Boulevard to become a life music venue; the best property to house one of the new bowling/dining concepts.
Combat the threat of adjacent development and ensure that the market won’t ignore Saginaw
  • Getting and staying top of mind to developers:
    • Identify and invite in the best ones, host them in Saginaw regularly—and make sure they are aware of the Saginaw Boulevard (SH 287) traffic counts and infrastructure improvements.
    • Communicate with them monthly through Constant Contact about Saginaw’s assets and opportunities. Find ways to restate the results of the Saginaw Merchandising Plan; to show them the best structures for unique attractions.
    • Get to know the owners of Saginaw’s top 10 vacant parcels and 10 best redevelopment options on or near Saginaw Blvd.; convene them in individual and group meetings on at least a quarterly (if not bi-monthly) basis. Ask what is necessary to help sell their properties.
    • Introduce developers and brokers to (and if necessary, creatively bridge the cost difference between them and) property owners;
  • Increasing traffic flow and reducing congestion by working with TxDOT to synchronize signals along the Saginaw Boulevard corridor—and examining other ways to facilitate east/west travel to and from key intersections.
Create a one-of-a-kind destination along Saginaw Boulevard
  • Fostering an attractive first impression at Saginaw’s Loop 820 entrance.
    • Meet with TxDOT’s Fort Worth District Office and explore ways to work together on monument entry and way finding signage (if necessary, even within TxDOT right-of-way) with a rail station theme;
    • Mirror Downtown Dallas and Fort Worth—and explore placement of lighting on Saginaw’s iconic grain elevators to make them even more visible from Loop 820 and beyond.
  • Taking tangible steps to improve the look of Saginaw’s “main drag”.
    • Pour and add curbs and hardscape where none exist now; install hardscape and Texas native landscape to create a consistent look throughout the Saginaw Boulevard corridor.
    • Install over time new “old” turn signals and light posts consistent with an historic train community feel.
    • Explore the addition of unique signage—such as sign hanging off the wall of businesses—again consistent with an historic theme.
  • Growing Saginaw’s daytime population by going vertical along SH 287 (Saginaw Boulevard);
    • Examine the zoning ordinance and land development plan to remove any obstacles to multi-story buildings fronting Saginaw Boulevard.
    • Hire a consultant to:
      • Research the most appropriate “railroad historic” architecture that’s true to and recaptures the best of Saginaw’s history;
      • Create a set of design standards to accommodate such a look with appropriate setbacks—and parking in the back/off the street;
      • Sketch elevations and renderings to help illustrate how existing parcels may be developed; existing buildings may be redeveloped;
      • Explore how the City may provide façade redevelopment grants, reduce or waive permit fees or rebate increased property tax values to help stimulate new office and mixed-use product;
      • Encourage use of larger, vacant parcels to the west for structured parking, where warranted, to ensure maximization of properties fronting Saginaw Boulevard.