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  • Outlook Conway 1Outlook Conway 1

    Outlook Conway

    M A Y 2 3 , 2 0 1 6 / V O L U M E 3 3 / N U M B E R 2 1 A S U P P L E M E N T T O A R K A N S A S B U S I N E S S

  • 2 ConwayArkansas.org

    STEPHENS INC. • MEMBER NYSE, SIPC

    WEALTH MANAGEMENT • RETIREMENT PLANNING FAMILY SUCCESSION PLANNING ESTATE PLANNING • EDUCATION PLANNING

    As we continue to grow our client base in Conway and the surrounding area, we never lose sight of what’s most important: helping our clients achieve their most important financial goals.

    As an independent firm in Arkansas since 1933, and investors ourselves, we understand our clients’ desire to create a lasting legacy of financial security by preserving and enhancing wealth.

    On behalf of everyone in our Conway office, thank you for trusting us to serve as your financial advisors. It is a privilege to serve the individuals and families of our area.

    703 Chestnut Street Conway, AR 72032 501-328-4000 800-827-5841

    Serving Extraordinary Clients in an Extraordinary Marketplace

    STEPHENSPCG.COM@Stephens_Inc

    Standing left to right: Robin Cole, Woody Cummins, Debbie Lilley, Gina Riddle

    Seated left to right: Bryan Cook (Branch Manager), Kimby O’Briant

  • Outlook Conway 3

    STEPHENS INC. • MEMBER NYSE, SIPC

    WEALTH MANAGEMENT • RETIREMENT PLANNING FAMILY SUCCESSION PLANNING ESTATE PLANNING • EDUCATION PLANNING

    As we continue to grow our client base in Conway and the surrounding area, we never lose sight of what’s most important: helping our clients achieve their most important financial goals.

    As an independent firm in Arkansas since 1933, and investors ourselves, we understand our clients’ desire to create a lasting legacy of financial security by preserving and enhancing wealth.

    On behalf of everyone in our Conway office, thank you for trusting us to serve as your financial advisors. It is a privilege to serve the individuals and families of our area.

    703 Chestnut Street Conway, AR 72032 501-328-4000 800-827-5841

    Serving Extraordinary Clients in an Extraordinary Marketplace

    STEPHENSPCG.COM@Stephens_Inc

    Standing left to right: Robin Cole, Woody Cummins, Debbie Lilley, Gina Riddle

    Seated left to right: Bryan Cook (Branch Manager), Kimby O’Briant

    Conway and Faulkner County continue to be among the

    most dynamic locations for business in Arkansas and the

    region. Our education infrastructure, competitive operat-

    ing environment and quality of life combine to offer the

    perfect location for a diverse group of businesses. You’ll

    fi nd technology leaders like Acxiom and Hewlett Packard

    Enterprise next door to manufacturing giants Interna-

    tional Paper and Kimberly Clark.

    Often mistaken for a “suburb” of Little Rock, Conway is

    the secondary job market of the Little Rock-North Little

    Rock-Conway MSA. It is the epicenter of a multi-county

    economic engine for north central Arkansas we call the

    North Metro. Every day thousands of people choose

    Conway for healthcare services, education, shopping,

    dining and entertainment. Nearly 21,000 drive into the

    city for employment. This dynamic local economy is

    fueling a construction boom that is perhaps unmatched

    in the history of our community.

    By establishing your business in Conway and Faulkner

    County, you will join a growing number of others who

    have discovered the advantages of this competitive busi-

    ness climate. We encourage you to review the in-depth

    economic information provided in this report. And

    we encourage you to reach out to the Chamber as we

    help you participate in one of the south’s most vibrant

    economies.

    Brad Lacy

    President & CEO Conway Area Chamber of Commerce

    It All Comes Together in Conway

    | (501) 450-6000 | ConwayCorp.com |

    Since we’re committed to our own city, assistance is never far away. That’s why Conway residents enjoy local customer service with weekend and after-hours support. It’s convenience for you, powered by us.

  • 4 ConwayArkansas.org

    6 OVERVIEW 10 INFRASTRUCTURE 12 THE NORTH METRO 14 FACTS AND FIGURES 16 HEALTHCARE 20 RETAIL 24 COLLEGES & UNIVERSITIES

    PUBLISHER MITCH BETTIS

    EDITOR TODD TRAUB

    ART DIRECTOR DEAN WHEELER

    CONTRIBUTING WRITER DWAIN HEBDA

    EDITORIAL ONLINE EDITOR LANCE TURNER

    DEPUTY ONLINE EDITOR TRE BAKER

    SALES & MARKETING VICE PRESIDENT OF BUSINESS SALES BONNIE JACOBY

    DIRECTOR OF MARKETING & DIGITAL SALES

    JAKE SLIGH

    SENIOR ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE ROSEMARY BRUTON

    ACCOUNT EXECUTIVES GREG CHURAN,

    SCOTT HAGGARD, MICHAEL JOHNSON,

    MYLES MCDOUGAL

    ADVERTISING COORDINATORS BETHANY JOHNSON, JESSICA PRIDMORE

    EVENTS MANAGER LESLIE GORDY

    MARKETING AND RESEARCH MANAGER DEVAN MALONE

    EVENTS COORDINATOR ALEX HOWLAND

    ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT DENISE BROCKINTON

    ADVERTISING ASSISTANT BROCK WALKER

    DESIGN PRODUCTION MANAGER APRIL SCOTT

    SENIOR DESIGNER JOSEPH STOUT

    DIGITAL OPERATIONS SPECIALIST REBEKAH EVELAND

    CIRCULATION CIRCULATION MANAGER DANA MEYER

    CIRCULATION COORDINATOR CARLA SMITH

    ADMINISTRATION ACCOUNTING MANAGER HAL LAMMEY

    ACCOUNTING SUPERVISOR KIM CLARK

    HUMAN RESOURCES BILL PAGE

    EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT KRISTEN HELDENBRAND

    CHAIRMAN & CEO OLIVIA MYERS FARRELL

    PRESIDENT MITCH BETTIS

    EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR CUSTOM SOLUTIONS JOHN TUCKER

    © 2016 ARKANSAS BUSINESS LIMITED PARTNERSHIP

    Outlook Conway

    C O N T E N T S

  • Outlook Conway 5

    The PicTure of healTh

    The specialists at Arkansas Urology provide expert care for every member of your family, from infants to seniors.

    • Women’s Health • Pediatric Urology • Bladder Health • Urological Cancer • Kidney Stones • Sexual Health • Prostate Health • Men’s Health

    Clinics throughout central Arkansas • Toll-free 877-321-8452 • ArkansasUrology.com

    The Epoch team is focused exclusively on men’s health issues. We specialize in treating conditions many men face as they age, including: • Lack of Energy/Drive • Weight Gain • Moodiness • Loss of Libido

    800 Exchange Ave., Suite 103, Conway • 501-358-6062 • EpochMensHealth.com

    YOUR BUSINESS

    Trusted by Arkansans for more than 65 years to provide affordable, reliable health insurance, it’s our deep roots here — and love for the state — that keep us committed to helping Conway grow even stronger and live fearless.

    means everything to us.

    MPI 4971 4/16

  • 6 ConwayArkansas.org

    The University of Central Arkansas, one of three higher learning institutions that call Conway home.

  • Outlook Conway 7

    B Y D W A I N H E B D A

    Brad Lacy, president and chief executive officer of the Conway Area Chamber of Commerce, takes a deep breath to consider the question before him: What eco- nomic identity has the city forged for itself over the past 20 years?

    There’s much to draw upon for that question, which is part of the difficulty with the answer. Years of popula- tion growth, economic development and community im- provement leave a mark on a community, as Conway can readily attest. Exactly what shape that mark takes for the future — the peg upon which business leaders can hang continued economic development — is harder to define.

    “I think that we’re confusing sometimes to people, even here in Arkansas,” Lacy said. “It’s hard to compare us to the next whatever, because we’re a little bit of a lot of things. We’re very much a college town but we’re not Oxford, Mississippi. There’s a part of us that’s very much a suburb, so some people want to lump us into this cat- egory of being just a bedroom community to Little Rock, but that’s not true. We have a sizable tech community but we’re not Austin, Texas.

    “We’re a little bit of a lot of things, so to say, ‘Yeah, we want to be the best Conway that we can be,’ and look for places to compare ourselves to and benchmark, we’ve never found someone exactly like us.”

    Conway has had an impressive run over the past couple of decades, from downtown redevelopment to luring na- tional and international companies to addressing tourism and neighborhood infill. Throughout, Conway enjoyed a steady population growth of highly educated, mostly family types the majority of whom, unlike past genera- tions, now work as well as live here instead of commuting to Little Rock.

    The additional rooftops proved enticing enough to at- tract new retail corridors and even a new hospital, but still couldn’t meet labor demands, making the city a magnet for people from other small towns as far away as Beebe, Clinton and Russellville.

    Despite all this — or more accurately, because of it — civic and business leaders find it difficult to draw one core strategy for developing the Conway of the future. Instead, as it has done throughout its history, city leaders are embracing growth through reinvention.

    “Every generation in Conway has had to deal with managing a town very different from the one that they were first introduced to,” said