Coatesville Anticipates Economic Development Opportunities

Good things are coming to Coatesville.

The city is already reaping benefits from being designated as an Opportunity Zone, according to a recent Philadelphia Business Journal article. Opportunity Zones were created as part of the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 and are designed to spur job creation and economic development by providing tax benefits to investors. Coatesville is the only Chester County municipality that has this designation.

Gary Smith, president and chief executive officer of the Chester County Economic Development Council, recalled how Coatesville used to be a bustling community with a thriving steel industry when he was younger.

“The opportunity zone is huge,” he told the Business Journal. “It’s going to be a transformational tool.”

Efforts are already underway in Coatesville to boost economic development, community services, and public transportation through the restoration of regional rail serviceView more information about other projects that are in progress.

Sonia Huntzinger, economic development administrator at the economic development organization in Coatesville known as 2nd Century Alliance, believes the opportunity zone designation is already working.

“Throughout my career, the tipping point is when you start fielding more phone calls than you are making,” she told the Business Journal. “We have reached that point.”