While the branding effort is still in its planning stages, the two mayors plan to make the corridor a key part of its marketing effort for the two cities. "We just completed our strategic plan in the past two months and one of our initiatives has to do with bio-medical and life sciences," Gilbert mayor John Lewis told the Arizona Republic.
For Mesa mayor Scott Smith, healthcare is a key component of a campaign called HEAT, which will promote healthcare, education, aerospace and tourism as the key building blocks of the local economy. "We have the foundation for an incredible medical cluster,' said Smith. "The question is: How will we get together and market it?"
City officials in other parts of the country are considering similar campaigns. In the city of Southfield just outside of Detroit, redevelopment officials are proposing to create a healthcare corridor in its Cornerstone district, which is already home to Providence Hospital, insurer Health Alliance Plan, a plasma center and a newly-opened physical therapy center.
The plan being outlined would allocate up to $400,000 in property tax revenues to fund improvements in the area including new sidewalks and lighting. And it would include marketing efforts to attract providers throughout Michigan to build new medical facilities in the corridor.