Marlborough, MASS. September 27, 2019 – The Marlborough Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) announced last night that it has renewed its exclusive partnership with the popular food-centric TV program Phantom Gourmet. As part of the year-long collaboration, Phantom Gourmet has begun production of a new 30-second commercial that will aim to attract restaurateurs to Marlborough by highlighting the city’s business friendliness, expedited permitting and financial incentives.
MEDC executive director, Meredith Harris, shared the news with close to 60 state and local officials, as well as business and community leaders at the annual MEDC Founders Reception, which celebrated the organization’s 13thanniversary at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Marlborough. One of Phantom Gourmet’s founders, Michael Andelman, and his father, legendary radio host, Eddie Andelman, also attended the event to speak about their brand’s symbiotic relationship with the city. Originally established last fall, the partnership gave Marlborough exclusivity as the only community working with Phantom Gourmet to help promote it as an ideal place to live, work, play and invest to thousands of people across New England.
During the event, MEDC, whose mandate is to increase Marlborough’s commercial tax revenue, in order to stabilize the residential tax base and ensure a higher quality of life for all residents, celebrated a number of other economic wins.
Speaking to the crowd, Harris pointed out that over the past year, a number of new companies moved their headquarters to the city, including Exagrid, Doble Engineering and Candela Corp. As a result, both the office and overall commercial vacancy rates continued to decline, falling a full percentage point year-over-year and landing at 14% and 9% respectively at the start of 2019.
Downtown Marlborough continued to enjoy a revival, with two new breweries—Flying Dreams Brewing Co. and Lost Shoe Brewing and Roasting Co.—and one new restaurant, Double T’s Tavern, opening there. The state’s first Museum In The Streets, launched last month, offering a free walking tour that showcases the city’s historical identity through a series of informational panels installed across the downtown area. Over the summer, events like the weekly Farmers Market and Outdoor Concert Series, as well as the inaugural Marlborough Food Truck Festival, brought thousands of residents and visitors into Downtown Marlborough.
Beyond the core of the city, MEDC continued to work with residents and employers to help provide additional transportation options for those wishing to leave their cars at home or commute to the larger cities in the state. To that end, earlier this month, MEDC launched a free commuter shuttle bus service, which makes six full daily runs to and from the MBTA Southborough station. The city’s bike share program, Zagster, also continued to attract new riders throughout the warm seasons.
Along with branding consultancy NK&A Associates, MEDC has also been working with the local schools, city departments and various other local stakeholders to streamline the city’s messaging and ensure that everyone is working towards the same goals.
“We’ve done a lot over the past few years to attract new companies to the city, and now our goal is to retain them here,” said Harris. “We are doing this by thinking outside the box, bringing new amenities to the downtown area, providing transportation options for commuters, and creating unique partnership, like the one with Phantom Gourmet, in order to help us spread our message. The best part is that everyone in the city is now working together, singing from the same songbook, and sharing one cohesive message. I don’t know of any other community that is doing that.”
“The Phantom Gourmet partnership, the brewpub attraction campaign, the city shuttle bus—all of these have been innovative projects and real wins for MEDC and Marlborough,” said Mayor Vigeant. “It just goes to show how important it is for the city to have an economic development arm that can focus on exploring new strategies and ways to elevate the city’s profile and grow its economy. Over the past decade or so, MEDC has done an incredible job in promoting Marlborough. This has helped us grow our commercial tax base tremendously, which in turn has allowed us to maintain a stable residential tax rate.”
“In the last year Phantom Gourmet has provided Marlborough with 10 million impressions between the television show our events and our social media, and our audience is digging what they see,” said Michael Andelman. “We have covered restaurants in over 300 towns and cities and the number one business-friendly and forward thinking community we’ve ever dealt with is Marlborough. Hospitality has a great friend here.”
Also during the event, current MEDC Chair, Andrea Pion, awarder former MEDC Chair, Richard Tomanek, with a gift of appreciation for his nearly-decade-long service to the organization as a board member and his 2014-2018 chairmanship. For the past 25 years, Tomanek has also served as the General Manager of the Embassy Suites Hotel, which hosted last night’s event.
For more information about Marlborough’s Restaurant Attraction Program, go to http://marlboroughedc.com/restaurant.
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For images of the Founders Reception, go here.
The Marlborough Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) is the state chartered economic development corporation for the City of Marlborough, MA and represents a public-private partnership for planning. MEDC works with municipal and private investors to foster economic development, job growth and community revitalization. For a complete overview of MEDC visit MarlboroughEDC.com.
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