BEACON FALLS — The town is hoping business owners are looking for a sign that it is time to grow.
As part of the Economic Development Commission’s marketing strategy, the commission is advertising on a billboard along Interstate 95 North near the intersection with Route 8.
The billboard, which is designed to advertise to businesses looking to expand or open a new location, has “Need room to grow?” written across it. The billboard also includes the address for a new website built by the commission, beaconfalls.biz, along with a phone number to contact the commission.
“I think what it does is show people that Beacon Falls is serious about economic development. We are putting money and resources towards it. It’s not just that we are here but we are making investments,” Economic Development Commission Vice Chairman Jeremy Rodorigo said.
The billboard, which is slated to go up this month and stay up for two months, cost $6,500. The money to pay for it came out of the commission’s marketing budget.
Economic Development Commission Chairman Jack Betkoski said the location of the billboard was chosen carefully to maximize its impact. He said thousands of vehicles will drive by the billboard every day and the town is located only 20 minutes away.
“We hope making the investment is going to come back in a significant way,” Betkoski said.
Sadie Colcord, the town’s economic development consultant, said officials wanted the billboard in a place that people traveling to and from New York City would see it.
“We especially wanted the billboard close enough to New York so that we could potentially garner some interest from that market. With [New York City] being so expensive, Beacon Falls is a great, low-cost alternative with excellent connections to the rest of the Northeast and plenty of room to grow,” Colcord said.
The billboard is part of the town’s strategy to attract businesses and works in conjunction with the commission’s new website, which shows prospective businesses a list of available real estate for commercial and retail businesses in town.
As it grows, the website will include information such as the town’s tax incentive policy and land use regulations, Rodorigo said.
“We want to clearly let people see that Beacon Falls is here. We haven’t done a good job of that in the past. It is long overdue,” Rodorigo said.
Betkoski said the town wants potential businesses to know Beacon Falls is “open for business” and that there are large lots, such as the lots in the industrial park, and small lots along Main Street available.
“We think that Beacon Falls is a jewel in the Naugatuck Valley. We want to have people know how accessible it is to Fairfield County and New York state,” Betkoski said.
Colcord, who works for the nonprofit corporation Connecticut Economic Resource Center (CERC), said CERC has worked with municipalities across the state to create marketing campaigns. Each marketing campaign is different and not all of them include billboards, she said.
“In the case of Beacon Falls, a billboard was the right way to simply raise awareness about opportunities in Beacon Falls,” Colcord said.
Betkoski said promoting Beacon Falls will help all residents in town.
“Basically, we want businesses to build and come here and expand our tax base here in Beacon Falls so we can keep taxes stable or lower them,” Betkoski said.