Economic Development Specialist – Research

SUMMARY OF RESPONSIBILITIES:

Assist the Director of Economic Development in carrying out the economic development mission of the DDD.

The main focus of the Economic Development Specialist – Research is to provide accurate, up-to-date data and other information about downtown properties, demographics, economic statistics, and economic development incentive programs offered by the DDD and local and state partners to compel investment into the district from lenders, brick-and-mortar businesses, and real estate development entities.

In many instances, the Economic Development Specialist – Research will be the first point of contact for property owners, developers, brokers, and others who need data and other tools to promote the benefits of doing business and developing property downtown.

QUALIFICATION STANDARDS:

To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below represent the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required.

EDUCATION:

  • Bachelor’s Degree in economic development, urban planning, business, finance, real estate, social sciences, or related field.
  • At the discretion of the President/CEO, experience may be substituted for education.

EXPERIENCE:

  • At least two years of experience in one of the abovementioned fields, demonstrating strong analytical and relationship-building skills.
  • Must have excellent oral and written communication and computer skills.
  • Must have familiarity with the City’s comprehensive zoning ordinances, HDLC regulations, and City codes.
  • Must have comfort with database management.
  • Demonstrated ability to collaborate and work as a member of a highly motivated and collegial team.
  • Experience in urban design and/or planning is desirable.
  • GIS experience is helpful but not mandatory.

ESSENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:

  • Develop and maintain DDD Geographic Information System (GIS) or other GIS-based platforms as a central source of geographic and statistical information about Downtown.
  • Manage the tracking of Downtown market data and ensure that all appropriate internal databases are maintained accurately, including
    • business openings/closings
    • rental rates
    • occupancy rates
    • investment activity and trends
    • building permit activity
    • zoning applications
    • land and building sales
    • new office tenants
    • and other applicable data.
  • Work collaboratively to research, measure and aggregate key demographic, employment, real estate, and cultural statistics that tell the story of Downtown with
    • government agencies
    • economic development and research partners
    • commercial real estate professionals
    • and downtown stakeholders
  • Produce data, maps, and analysis for the annual State of Downtown report, quarterly economic development reports, and specialized information packages for business and development prospect clients.
  • Brief DDD staff and economic development partners on emerging trends and conduct special analysis to support downtown planning, programs, and policy advocacy.
  • Maintain inventory of downtown planning information such as land uses, zoning, historic districts, etc.
  • Maintain up-to-date property owner records and tax assessment data.
  • Maintain inventory of useful maps, photographs, and other data visualization tools necessary for promoting Downtown.
  • Maintain Downtown plans, studies, and related information for distribution as needed.
  • Maintain the Development Activity Report and Downtown Facts with updated, accurate information.
  • Provide site-specific and area-wide reports based on GIS or other location-based software and other sources as needed.
  • Prepare recruitment information packages to assist in retaining and attracting downtown businesses.
  • Assist realtors, prospective tenants, and property owners, serving as a liaison between prospects and property owners and/or appropriate City departments.
  • Assist businesses in various aspects of the development process, including permits and city approvals.
  • Support the processing of the Façade Improvement Program, Micro Façade Improvement Program, and Outdoor Dining Program applications, which are administered by the Economic Development Department.
  • Respond to requests for information from the general public on demographics, properties, etc.
  • Perform related duties as assigned.

SUPPORTIVE DUTIES & RESPONSIBILITIES:

  • Work with the Public Space Manager to identify candidates for DDD’s Sidewalk Repair Program through property ownership research.
  • Work within the Economic Development Department to identify problems with existing legislation, ordinances, codes, etc., which regulate the Downtown Development District and devise solutions to address shortcomings through supportive research.
  • Work with the Marketing and Communications department on marketing collateral development and joint projects impacting economic development downtown.
  • Maintain liaison with the City of New Orleans Offices of Economic Development and Workforce Development, New Orleans Business Alliance, New Orleans BioInnovation Center, Greater New Orleans, Inc., and related agencies to carry out projects.

KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS, AND ABILITIES:

The individual must possess the following knowledge, skills, and abilities and be able to explain and demonstrate that they can perform the essential duties of the position, with or without reasonable accommodation, using some combination of knowledge, skills, and abilities:

  • Ability to read the English language to fully comprehend work requests, caution notices, and similar written materials.
  • Strong analytical, research, and project management skills.
  • Advanced proficiency in Microsoft Excel, Microsoft PowerPoint and Microsoft Office suite.
  • Working knowledge of database applications, graphic design, and GIS is desired but not required.
  • Familiarity with real estate and demographic data sources, including the US Census, ESRI-based products, CoStar, Placer.ai, IMPLAN, real estate brokerage reports, etc., is preferred.
  • Possess excellent written and verbal communication skills and be comfortable interacting with diverse groups, including developers, business entrepreneurs, property owners, residents, and government officials.
  • Strong attention to detail and a demonstrated commitment to data integrity.
  • Must be able to work independently and as part of a team.
  • Experience thriving in a high-paced, results-oriented environment.
  • Ability to accurately type at least 25 wpm.
  • Ability to prepare and analyze data, figures and transcriptions prepared on and generated by computer.
  • Ability to work with fingers to pick, pinch, type and carry out substantial movements (motions) of the wrists and hands as requested.
  • Ability to perceive the nature of sound with or without a correction. Ability to receive detailed information through oral communication and make fine discriminations in sound.
  • Ability to exert up to 10 lbs. of force occasionally and/or a negligible amount of force to frequently or constantly lift, carry, push, pull, or otherwise move objects, including the human body; sitting most of the time; walking and standing are occasionally required.

LICENSES OR CERTIFICATES

GIS certification is helpful.

SALARY RANGE

$50,000 to $62,000 / year

Please email a resume and cover letter or any questions to [email protected]