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What is Economic Development

Economic development (ED) is defined as a program, group of policies, or activity designed to improve economic well-being and quality of life by creating and retaining jobs that facilitate growth and provide a stable tax base. 

All Departments Can Represent Economic Development

Lakewood tries to respond to community needs in many ways, such as:

  • Ensuring the local investment climate is functional and attractive for local, national and international investment;
  • Retaining, attracting, encouraging and promoting small, medium and large employers;
  • Investing in physical infrastructure;
  • Investing in soft infrastructure (educational and workforce development, institutional support systems and regulatory issues);
  • Targeting specific sections of the city for regeneration or growth;
  • Supporting newly emerging businesses.

What are Primary and Secondary Employers?

The Lakewood Economic Development program has been designed with our unique population in mind. We focus on both primary and secondary employers.

Primary employers are the industry of a community, such as manufacturers that sell the majority of their goods and services outside Lakewood and Jefferson County.  They bring new money into the local economy and require highly skilled and educated labor. These companies offer high wages which provide the discretionary income to support local service and retail establishments (secondary employers). 

Secondary employers serve the local community and are dependent on the wages that Primary employers provide.  They provide goods and services to Primary employers and local residents. Common secondary employers include construction, retail and dining establishments. Arts and cultural industries are also considered secondary employers.