EDC’s public-private partnership lures and retains jobs

Published: Friday, January 11, 2013 at 03:23 PM.

However, the EDC was a step ahead of the disaster, she said.

“The Deepwater Horizon tragedy … had a ripple effect across our county,” Rasmussen said. “Everybody started talking about diversifying our economy. We were already working on it. We have always been about diversification of our industry.”

The county for years has collaborated with Eglin Air Force Base’s research lab, NASA and the Space Florida research center on a major project, currently in development, for an unmanned air and ground vehicle laboratory and test center on Louis Turner Boulevard near Shalimar on University of Florida property, Rasmussen said.

With fire and wind-resistant protective walls, the lab would be for “research, development and testing of unmanned vehicles,” Rasmussen said. “We’re looking at small vehicles, not monster ones. This can be utilized by so many entities,” including the military, public safety and environmental research.

“This is diversification for our county. There is a need for this,” Rasmussen said. “This is something that even though it’s not in Crestview, would benefit Crestview. It would benefit all of us.”

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