Mayors Say Boosting Infrastructure, Regional Collaboration Key To Economic Growth

Talk Business & Politics

FORT SMITH (TB&P) — Regional mayors joined in a panel discussion on collaborating to improve the Fort Smith metro, including doing more to improve regional infrastructure. The discussion was part of the second annual Invest Fort Smith summit held Sept. 19.

Alma Mayor Jerry Martin, Fort Smith Mayor George McGill, Greenwood Mayor Doug Kinslow and Van Buren Mayor Joe Hurst shared their views on what is working in the region along with ways they hope to work together to improve it.

The mayors agreed there are lots of things working for the region and a lot of that is due to the Arkansas River.

“We have an amazing asset called the Arkansas River. There is lots of land to be developed (in Fort Smith) along the river. There is a lot we can do with the river. It is a wonderful resource,” McGill said.

The river will be an integral part of the intermodal port the region is working toward and that port will be huge for the entire region, the mayors agreed.

Combining river shipping with service from three major railroads represented and the completion of Interstate 49 and the area will be positioned as a transportation hub, they said.

But even before the completion of the intermodal port, there is a lot going on in the region that needs to be touted.

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