Bill Roark

We live in an area blessed to have a focus on higher education. While we may think that is not really important to me, it has a huge impact on all our lives.

Northeast Louisiana is not known for its manufacturing plants. We have no steel mills, no auto manufacturing plants and no large parts manufacturers. Our single claim to fame in this area may be Graphic Packaging and its support industries. What we do have are institutions of higher education. Often unrecognized and under appreciated these institutions have become the economic engines that drive our economy in Northeast Louisiana. They silently pump untold millions into our economy year after year.

What impact would it have if these economic engines went away? The Administration, the Professors, the support staff, the athletic teams and their families are all contributors to our economic strength. The 3 Universities, ULM, Louisiana Tech and Grambling have a combined enrollment of over 25,000 students, all of which live most of the year in our area and spend money here, buying clothes, eating at restaurants, securing supplies and purchasing fuel, etc. Add to that the enrollment at Delta Community College with their several Northeast Louisiana Campuses contributing to our economy. We may not have manufacturing smokestacks but we have dorms, stadiums and buildings filled with classrooms full of students seeking degrees of higher education.

These students, faculty and support staff are the ones who buy homes, start businesses, make investments, deposit into our financial institutions and in general make Northeast Louisiana a strong and stable economy. Many of these students will choose to make this area their home, raise their families here, create and fill jobs here and become the success stories of tomorrow.

Oh! And I almost forgot the new and soon to open Osteopathic School with its 400 medical students. Many of these doctors will settle in Northeast Louisiana and strengthen the medical services available. They will provide our area with the latest and best treatment for our medical conditions. They also will add to our economy with high paying careers and staff.

ON THE LOCAL SCENE

The OFFICE BUILDING at 320 Pine Street (corner of N. 4th Street), Monroe has been sold for $210,000. The 2,800 sf building sold for $74. 80 psf.

The COMMERCIAL PROPERTY at 3012 N. 7th Street (also called Whites Ferry Road) west Monroe has sold for $185,000. The .91 acres with some storage/shop buildings sold for $4.66 psf.

Bill Roark is a Commercial Associate Broker at Tri State Properties and may be contacted by email to bill.roark@reagan.com.

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