On Wednesday, Loudoun Economic Development released a special report detailing the economic impacts of COVID-19 and how the county responded.
The three-page report covers the year 2020 and the services the county stood up to help businesses weather COVID-19.
It also highlights the new investment in Loudoun despite the pandemic and job losses, including $6.78 billion in new commercial investment announced, 4.9 million square feet of commercial real estate, 3,515 jobs created or retained, 30 Fast-Track Commercial Incentive Program applications.
“I have said for years that Loudoun is the greatest county in the nation, and we showed what that means in 2020. I’m very proud of the county’s overall response, especially our efforts in the business community, and it’s clear that these results don’t happen by accident,” stated County Chair Phyllis J. Randall (D-At Large). “As we move in 2021, our focus remains on a sustainable, equitable recovery for all Loudoun residents and businesses.”
The Department of Economic Development reached out to more than 4,000 Loudoun businesses in the opening weeks of the crisis to better understand their needs and the best ways to use county resources. That resulted in the COVID-19 Business Interruption Fund and Outdoor Seating Grants, which combined for more than $12 million of financial support for nearly 2,000 businesses.
The department later collaborated with Visit Loudoun and the Loudoun Chamber of Commerce for the Loudoun Is Ready pledge and Take Loudoun Home marketing campaign to drive to bring customers back to Loudoun businesses.
The Loudoun Jobs Portal, another new resource, aggregates employment opportunities at Loudoun businesses from 10,000 public job boards, and was followed up with a more comprehensive suite of workforce services, the Work In Loudoun initiative.
The Loudoun Made Loudoun Grown Marketplace, an e-commerce platform provided at no cost to Loudoun farmers and artisans, lets them sell locally, and received $270,000 in grants from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and state.
And the Data Center Task Force gives the more than 350 businesses in Data Center Alley a coordinated point of contact.
“The Board of Supervisors and Loudoun Economic Development took swift and decisive action when the COVID-19 pandemic hit to protect and preserve our business community,” state dSupervisor Matthew F. Letourneau (R-Dulles), who chairs the board’s Finance, Government Operations and Economic Development Committee. “This quick pivot from business development to business survival helped avoid some of the worst impacts that other areas have experienced, and now we’re seeing signs of optimism, such as a drop in our unemployment rate close to pre-pandemic levels. As the economic recovery continues, Loudoun will be well positioned to continue to lead the region in economic growth.”
“Over the past 15 years, Loudoun has built a solid economic base that has served us well during this time of uncertainty. It’s a credit to the Board of Supervisors to have both the foresight for economic stability, as well as an ongoing commitment to decisive leadership. Our economy is built on diverse industries, from the thriving rural enterprises in Western Loudoun to the successful commercial companies throughout the Dulles Technology Corridor,” stated Executive Director Buddy Rizer. “Remarkably, our #LoudounPossible economy continued to grow this year, which is a testament to our business leaders and our talented workforce.”
To see the report, go to Biz.Loudoun.Gov/AnnualReport.