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Local Consumers and Businesses Asked for Input for Newport City Trade Market Survey

Newport-- University of Vermont (UVM) Extension and Newport City Renaissance are seeking input from community members and businesses regarding the current and future economic health of Newport's downtown.  Consumer demographic and lifestyle data as well as business data on needs and opportunities will be used for a trade market analysis that will help guide future economic development and community revitalization efforts in the Newport area.

Year-round and seasonal residents, second-home owners, frequent visitors and individuals employed locally are asked to participate in a consumer survey for the Newport City Trade Market Analysis on their buying habits and preferences for retail stores and services. The survey also asks for recommendations for additional types of service and retail businesses, restaurants and community assets such as walking trails, sports facilities, expanded public parking and waterfront activities, among other options.

The survey is currently available online and can be accessed at www.DiscoverNewportVT.com. For more information or to obtain a paper copy to fill out, contact Bill McMaster, UVM Extension community resources development specialist, at (802) 334-7325, ext. 482.  The deadline to respond is Aug. 31.

A second survey targets area businesses with questions relating to four major proposed developments--the Renaissance Block (mixed-use development on Main Street in Newport); the Hotel and Marina Complex (restaurant, retail and conference facilities on Newport's Waterfront Plaza); the Walmart Supercenter (Route 5, Derby) and expansion of the Newport State Airport, Coventry. Business owners who have not been contacted and who would like to participate in the survey also should contact McMaster.

Information from the two surveys will help existing businesses adapt their marketing and operating strategies based on consumer spending behaviors and proposed economic development projects. In addition, the data will be used to identify potential business expansion opportunities and attract new retail stores, restaurants and other businesses.

Both surveys were developed, with guidance from UVM Extension, by a local volunteer committee who identified economic development issues specific to the area. Results will be made available to businesses and the public in the fall.

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