What is a Mega-region?
The anticipated growth of metropolitan areas in coming years will produce new opportunities to collaborate beyond their boundaries. These new, larger metropolitan areas are better known as mega-regions. Tom Frantz, CEO and Chairman of Williams Mullen, highlighted the opportunity of creating a mega-region from Richmond to the Oceanfront. This potential mega-region creates a range of strengths and challenges, including but not limited to transportation advancements, interconnecting economic systems and shared natural resources.
How does it affect me?
The current population growth and low-density settlement patterns create the need for policy coordination on a regional level. Creating a link between the Capitol region and the natural resources of Hampton Roads, such as the Port of Virginia, is a win-win that will only encourage additional collaboration for economic and transportation purposes. According to Frantz, most of the rapid population growth and economic expansion in the country is expected to occur within 11 mega-regions. Without a mega-region from Richmond to the Oceanfront, we will essentially miss out.
What happens next?
Mega-regions that share common interests benefit from a collaborative approach to policy decision making. The Hampton Roads Business Roundtable has already agreed to meet quarterly with the Richmond Business Roundtable to reinforce their partnership, Frantz explained. He also encouraged members to share information about the ongoing discussions surrounding the mega-region. We will begin polling the membership to determine if our organization supports the concept. Be mindful that spurring economic development in our area enhances our quality of life. Any initiative that accomplishes this is more than just a good idea, it’s good business.