The latest issue of Space Coast Business offers a look at the region's 2012 economic outlook and finds things aren't as apocalyptic as some were claiming one year ago.
In the article "Titusville: The Game Isn't Over", author George White notes that "the local population has not suffered the expected domino effect" after the retirement of the Space Shuttle.
"The early part of the year there was a lot of doom and gloom that this place was going to become a ghost town, but it hasn’t become a ghost town," said [District 1 County Commissioner Robin] Fisher, who has helped spearhead the Greater Titusville Renaissance.
"My mindset was the first way we have to save ourselves is we have to change the way we look and get some pride in ownership. This is not a 20- or 30-person thing. This is a community that has taken ownership. I’m not going to be happy until everyone that lives in North Brevard puts their name on it because that’s what I think it’s going to take to change it. You’ve got to get the whole community to embrace it," he said.
Added Titusville Area Chamber of Commerce President Marcia Gaedcke: "It’s about everybody coming together and pitching in. If we just sit around and wait for somebody to save us it’s not going to happen. Bit by bit, it’s changing for the better and people are getting enthused."
Mayor Jim Tulley is very much on board. "There are too many ‘Chicken Littles’ running around. There are too many naysayers. We’ve got to change the attitude of the whole community that this really is a great place to live," he said.
The article cites optimism that the welcome mat for commercial enterprises at Kennedy Space Center will help diversify the local economy.
"We’re reinventing what the term spaceport means to KSC. We’re going from just being a NASA field center to a future that provides NASA a significant opportunity to reduce its burden to support all of the things we have here at KSC and we can do that without demolishing or abandoning those capabilities where they are no use to anybody," Spaceport Development Manager Jim Ball said ...
"Titusville has paid their dues of being a company town. Is it better to have a single program that employs 6,000 people or ten programs that employ 600 people each or 60 programs that employ 100 people each? We want what creates the stronger, more sustainable economy. The economy that KSC is evolving into is a multi-user space launch complex that is much less vulnerable. This movement towards a capability that is less dependent on a single NASA program is only good for the community," he explained.