Governor Bobby Jindal’s announcement of IBM locating offices in downtown Baton Rouge, providing over 800 new jobs within the capital region, is testament to the quality master plans created to spur investments downtown. Davis Rhorer describes the strong principals of both Plan Baton Rouge I and Plan Baton Rouge II as, “a series of building blocks; taking downtown to the next level again and again with each new development or project. Those building blocks of development have brought this type of project to our city.”
State officials Governor Jindal and Secretary Moret, in collaboration with Mayor-President Kip Holden, and the Baton Rouge Area Chamber captured this internationally renowned company with incentives to locate downtown and increase the economic viability of Baton Rouge. Also complementing this unique partnership is the commitment from Louisiana State University (LSU) to an increase in computer related graduates, along with riverfront property improvements from The Baton Rouge Area Foundation and Commercial Properties Realty Trust. The riverfront property is projected to contain the IBM facility as well as 95 residential units. Davis Rhorer commends the partnership stating, “This monumental public/private partnership project has always been the desired result from the implementation of these plans and the commitment of the community and Louisiana’s elected officials. I have seen over and over again when partnerships occur, great developments can happen.”
The IBM announcement has amplified the downtown development stage, adding to the recent surge of development including; another riverfront property returning to commerce, technological employment centers investing in downtown, young entrepreneurs converging to catalyze additional community interest and investment, additional public green spaces connecting downtown cultural and civic attractions, residential opportunities increasing in conjunction with each project, and vital support services including the recently opened pharmacy as well as a small grocery locating on Historic Third Street. Rhorer says there’s more on the way remarking, “Welcome to the Renaissance of Downtown Baton Rouge!” For more information about downtown’s master plans or projects visit the Downtown Development District’s website at www.downtownbatonrouge.org.