Economic Development

Wooster Innovation Park East Aerial
Find a Site in the BEST City to Grow Your Business
Latest Properties for Sale & Lease
Aerial view of Wooster's Historic Quinby Neighborhood
Strengthening our Neighborhoods
Learn about opportunities and incentives for investing in our neighborhoods.
Tools for Reinvesting In Downtown
Tools for Reinvesting in Downtown
Business and Community investing Together to build a thriving Future.
North End Wooster Real Estate Development
Wayne County's Commercial Center
Wooster's bustling North End offers a variety of convenient retail, restaurant, and entertainment destinations.

Economic Development 

538 N. Market St., PO Box 1128

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Map of top Ohio Micropolitans in 2024
Updated: March 1, 2024 4:53 PM

PRESS

Special Public Notice:

Please view the article below for an important notice regarding the City of Wooster's CHIP Grant Program for Wayne County.

 

NOTICE OF FINDING OF NO SIGNIFICANT IMPACT AND NOTICE OF INTENT TO REQUEST RELEASE OF FUNDS

 

Applications for home repair grants are now open for residents across Wayne County. Funding is also available for prospective new homebuyers to assist with downpayment. Homeowners and prospective homeowners must earn no more than $66,250 annually for a family of four, or no more than $46,500 for an individual (which is considered to be low-to-moderate income). Grants are also available to landlords seeking to repair their units in order to rent to low-to-moderate income residents. Learn more here: 

Redirects to Wayne Metropolitan Housing Authority, a City of Wooster Partner:

2024 - 2025 CHIP Grants

Wooster - Your Partner In Building Prosperity!

Wooster - Why Economic Development?Welcome to the City of Wooster - your partner in building a thriving community! We're here to help everyone who calls Wooster home or visits our community in creating a stronger and more prosperous future! The City of Wooster's Office of Economic Development works to foster opportunities for prosperity with the following efforts:

  • Reinvestment Help: Through programs such are the Community Reinvestment Program and also CHIP, we help local property owners with financial tools to help in rebuilding within our community. CHIP provides direct grants to low-to-moderate-income homeowners to repair their homes, while CRA is a property tax exemption available to anyone rehabilitating or rebuilding a home in our historic neighborhoods.
  • Research Support for Industry: Our Office provides local businesses, start-ups, and prospective industry with local data that can be helpful in making decisions to expand, launch, or reinvest. From assistance with research to help with marketing or finding a space for lease or sale, our local development is available to explore opportunities for businesses navigating changing markets. 
  • Infrastructure Grants: Did you know that Ohio is a "Donor" State, where residents pay more in federal taxes than they receive back? We work to leverage state and federal grant resources to lower the cost of infrastructure for residents. From sidewalks, to road construction, to bike trails, and community facilities such as fire stations and parks, we work to bring federal dollars back to work for your community.  
  • Community-Owned Business Park: Only a few years ago, Wooster did not have available sites with utilities measuring over 30 acres, whereas most major business expansions require 40 or more. Though Wooster Growth, the City's community improvement corporation, our city-owned business park allows Wooster to work with the State of Ohio to certify the Wooster Innovation Park and field inquiries from major business expansions, from food processing to research and development to advanced manufacturing. Already, the effort has allowed mainstay firms such as Wooster Brush and Frito-Lay to expand within their hometowns rather than elsewhere. 
Economic Strategic Plan

EDSP Map

The City of Wooster has launched an Economic Development Strategic Plan to help chart a long-term strategy to bolster prosperity for its residents. We have a vibrant ecosystem with several independent and government-sector organizations working to support new, existing, and expanding businesses, creating job opportunities and positive wage growth for our community. We wanted to learn what more could we be doing as a City to better serve our residents and businesses. Read our recently completed plan to learn more about some of the opportunities we have to cover gaps, such as supporting entrepreneurship, place-making, quality of life as our best incentive, communication, and branding. We are excited to have a roadmap for the future! And thank you the many different agencies and nonprofits which contributed to this plan for our City.

Wooster Economic Strategic Plan

Wooster Economic Drivers Report

Developing the Future

Whether finding a new home for a major manufacturing firm, working to launch a new company, or even reinvest in rehabilitating a home, the City of Wooster offers the perfect place to live, grow, and thrive. Working with our partners across the City, Wayne County, and the State of Ohio, Wooster offers businesses and residents a unique set of tools to build a prosperous future.

Aerial image of Old Airport Road

For Business

Continually ranked as the Top 10 Micropolitan in the nation, Wooster offers a world-class assortment of tools to assist our firms with growing their business. Our office, as well as our economic development partners, are available to provide local economic and market data. For Wooster firms seeking to expand their boundaries, or for prospective new businesses, the City offers Enterprise Zone and also Community Reinvestment Area incentives to aid in real estate development. Wooster also offers a Job Creation Tax Credit. Discover the opportunity Wooster offers for growing businesses. 

A repaired home.

For Residents

Everything around and available to us in the economy started as one person's idea, and grew from a tremendous amount of work, partnerships, and sacrifice. Such is true of many Wooster firms, which today employ people or sell products all across the globe. With a strong collection of vibrant and local organizations offering networking and mentoring resources, in addition to financing and loan opportunities such as the Wooster Opportunity Loan Fund, learn about how Wooster is a great place to start your newest venture.

Image of hands typing on a computer

For Start-Ups

Economic development, investing in the future, starts at home. The City of Wooster offers tools designed to help individual homeowners, or those seeking to become homeowners, invest in themselves and build a stronger financial future. Providing real estate tax savings, the Community Reinvestment Area program provides opportunities for property owners reinvesting in their one and two-family homes within Wooster's historic neighborhoods. Providing forgivable loans and small grants, the City also works to achieve grants to assist low income homeowners with emergency repairs through its CHIP Program. To learn more, please click here.

Real Estate & Development Resources
Aerial of Wooster Innovation Park

Wooster Innovation Park Sites

The Wooster Innovation Park is a community-owned business neighborhood featuring large lots up to 31 acres in size with a full suite of utilities and public infrastructure. Centered in Wayne County's largest employment center, site neighbors include Daisy Brand, The Wooster Brush Company, Scannell, and Schaeffler USA. Flat topography with no known environmental issues (Phase I available upon request), zoned I-2 General Industrial, and with recently-constructed heavy roadway infrastructure, the Wooster Innovation Site provides excellent opportunities for businesses expanding to Northeast Ohio. 

Image of Wooster Traffic County Map

Traffic Counts

Providing valuable information on site visibility, local traffic count data is available through the Ohio Department of Transportation's online Transportation Data Management System. This listing provides average daily traffic counts taken along various sections of roadways, both as part of ODOT's annual road survey and also from each traffic study conducted as part of a proposed development or roadway improvement.

Zoom Prospector Map Icon

Available Sites & Properties

View other commercial and industrial properties listed for sale and lease in the City of Wooster. This service which is made possible through JobsOhio with assistance from organizations including the City of Wooster and partner nonprofits Wayne Economic Development Council and TeamNeo. For questions on public infrastructure capacity or development proposals, or to have a Wooster site listed on this service, please contact us (330.263.5250 | Jmillea@woosteroh.com) and we will be happy to provide additional information. 

Visit Wooster in Wayne County

Discover Wooster's excellent quality of life, with entertainment offerings, boutique shopping, unique places, and excellent restaurants. VISIT WAYNE by the Wayne County Convention and Visitors Bureau provides the best resource for exploring all that Wooster and its neighboring communities have to offer.  From a top 100 Things to Do list to a recommended tour itinerary to our region's best tour guide, there is a lot to find on visitwaynecountyohio.com.

Work In Wayne

Visit our Partner resource, WORK IN WAYNE by WEDC, to learn why Wooster is the best place to grow your career or business. Discover our top-ranked schools K-12 throughout our greater micropolitan region in addition to our exceptional college and university offerings, our cultural amenities from the award winning Ohio Light Opera to sprawling Wooster Memorial Park to thriving downtowns and bright village centers, and our vibrant quality of life supported with excellent healthcare, transportation, exceptional safety, housing opportunities, and civic groups (with opportunities to volunteer!) dedicated to improving the quality of life for all. 

Special Report: Housing Update

Presentation Cover (Showing a development constraints map and housing proposal)

As housing supply remains critically low throughout Wayne County, the City of Wooster has been working to encourage new projects to support the creation of market-rate apartments, new single-family homes, and new workforce / affordable housing options. The City of Wooster recently made a presentation to the Wayne County Housing Coalition on several exciting new projects underway to bring new housing options for Wooster's current and future residents. New apartment housing will make it easier for new Wooster workers to join our community as residents, while new single-family and senior housing projects will open up opportunities for first-time homebuyers as existing homeowners move-up or downsize. Workforce housing will provide immediately-affordable apartment opportunities for income-qualified working families. View the presentation to learn about the challenges and opportunities for Wooster's future!

View: Wooster 2023 Housing Update Presentation

 

Jonathan Millea, CEcD, AICP

Development Coordinator

(330) 263-5250

Jmillea@woosteroh.com