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The CFDC Launches New Polk County Overview Video

October 30, 2023 News

When two companies collaborate to create a video showcasing everything that’s right about Polk County, the county and its chief economic development agency — the Central Florida Development Council— are the winners.  

“We are so grateful to Duke Energy for providing a grant that allowed us to hire Indie Atlantic Films to develop a new marketing video. We debuted it at our annual meeting in September. It was very well received,” said CFDC President & CEO Sean Malott.  

Indie Atlantic Films founder Andy McEntire loves working on such projects. “Here we are proud investors of the CFDC. We believe in the work they are doing here in Polk County,” he said. “We were thrilled to show off all the great things that are happening here in Central Florida.” 

Lisa Rain, head of Marketing, Innovation and Competitiveness for Duke Energy Florida Economic Development, said the company provided a Duke Energy Economic Development Grant for the project. 

“Duke Energy powers the lives of our customers and the vitality of our communities,” she said. “One way our Economic Development team achieves this mission is through our Economic Development grants. They support operational, marketing, research and strategic planning assistance for our Economic Development Organizations and community partners like the Central Florida Development Council.” 

The Video

McEntire said his team spent a week capturing footage at various locations around Polk County. This included using their drone to get a bird’s-eye view.  

“In addition, our animation and motion graphics team raised the bar with how we presented the video,” he said. “Polk County is cool, a great place to do business and raise your family. We wanted others to see what we get to experience daily.” 

McEntire said India Atlantic Films was grateful to be able to partner with the CFDC and Duke 
Energy to bring this video to life. “We know this will serve as a great resource.” 

The four-minute video points out that Polk is the fastest-growing county in the state. There are nearly 100 people moving in daily. Its strong infrastructure is bolstered by its access to major highways, deep-sea ports and airports, and is anchored by major supply chains, logistics companies and warehousing operations like Saddle Creek Logistics Services and The Ruthvens. It is home to CSX Intermodal Terminal, which has 930 acres of developable land. 

It also focuses on major industries like aviation/aerospace, medical sciences and agribusiness/agritechnology, all supported by seven colleges and universities that provide a skilled workforce for the future. 

Polk County has a “dynamic blend of research, technology, support and creative services.” It is a place where “big-city energy meets small-town charm.” And, it boasts a business-friendly tax environment and a low cost of living. 

The video also takes viewers on a stroll through the county’s downtown areas. Focusing on things like The Ritz Theatre, fireworks, concerts and more.  

Economic Development

McEntire said projects like this benefit all. “The economic development of Central Florida is critical to the growth and sustainability of not just our business, but countless others. As we embark on the next five to 10 years, we see great opportunities for growth, partnerships and diversification of our services.” 

Rain agreed. “Polk County is a very competitive location for economic development. This is evidenced by significant recent investments by Nucor Steel, Amazon Air, Advanced Drainage Systems and many others.  Polk County’s central location, available land and robust talent pipeline make it an attractive location for business. The CFDC does a wonderful job engaging economic development partners from across the region to grow and diversify the local economy.” 

The national Site Selection magazine has recognized Duke as a Top Utility in Economic Development 19 years in a row. 

“At Duke Energy, we help our economic development partners, site selection consultants and other key decision-makers locate ready sites while finding the best rates and incentives available for each project. Since energy can be one of the most significant costs in an operation, our proactive and collaborative approach is very important when it comes to winning projects in the communities we serve.” 

Duke’s Future in Polk

“Duke Energy is making continual investments in Polk County as we build a smarter, cleaner and more reliable energy future,” Rain said.  

She provided an update on several projects. “The Polk County Electric Reliability Project—announced in 2018— is nearing completion and will help strengthen reliability.  The construction of a new Osprey Substation and two new transmission lines, totaling approximately 48 miles, will help avoid system overloads on the existing Duke Energy transmission system by supplying an alternate path of energy flow to the surrounding areas. The new transmission infrastructure will also provide the opportunity for future economic development and growth in the region.” 

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