The Office of Strategy helps to lead and partners with community organizations on strategic initiatives and projects in New Hanover County, including those listed below.
New Hanover County worked with our economic development partner, Wilmington Business Development, to conduct a market analysis and site analysis for county-owned land on Blue Clay Road. Preliminary engineering studies and environmental assessments are currently underway with the purpose of determining the suitability of the site for future industrial development.
During the 2018-19 school year, New Hanover County partnered with Communities in Schools of Cape Fear to mentor third and fourth-grade students in preparation for their End of Grade tests. Twenty-eight employees from the county’s SERVE Professional Development Academy participated, tutoring students at Alderman Elementary School.
This partnership is through Communities in Schools of Cape Fear’s PaSS Program, which provides volunteer opportunities for mentors to be paired with a student who is at risk of not reading at grade level. County employees and students met once a week for 10 weeks to read one-on-one and practice reading comprehension skills.
In 2017, New Hanover County providing funding to expanded Pre-K for three and four year olds. In partnership with New Hanover County Schools, 45 new openings were made available – the equivalent of three classrooms – giving more children in our community a structured learning environment and preparing them for kindergarten.
The budget passed in June 2021 adds 3 more classrooms for a total of 6 Pre-K classrooms.
New Hanover County is in the unique position of owning an entire city-block in downtown Wilmington. This block currently includes a New Hanover County Library and a 640-space parking garage, but a large portion of the block is underutilized. The vision for this block is to house a modern public library and Cape Fear Museum, better utilize the parking garage, and include private space for retail, residential, office, or hotel opportunities. In July 2017, a feasibility study was conducted outlining a path forward. The New Hanover County Board of Commissioners unanimously directed staff to proceed with issuing a Request for Proposals from project teams, which explores the options of entering into a public-private partnership.
New Hanover County has worked with the Cape Fear Public Utility Authority and other partners to extend water and sewer service along the U.S. Highway 421 corridor. This expansion, completed December 2019, brings new development opportunities, more jobs, and economic growth for to this region.
To learn more about this project, see the video below and read more in Chris Coudriet’s Manager’s Message.