Year in Review: Top Economic Development Accomplishments That Changed Evanston, WY in 2023

19 Feb 2024

The team at the Evanston Economic Development Organization (EDO) continues to make this region a desirable place to live and work. Our staff members manage several projects throughout the year to attract large employers, support local businesses, and make life enjoyable for everyone who calls Evanston home.

“If you haven’t seen what the Evanston EDO has been up to, now is the time to check in,” Rocco O’Neill, Community and Economic Development Director at the City of Evanston. “Many of our projects have 12-month windows to complete, but they will have decades-long impacts on the local community.”

Here are a few of our top accomplishments from the past year and how our success stories from 2023 will pave the way for an impressive 2024.    

Shades Brewing is Coming to the Roundhouse

Fans of Shades Brewing will be able to enjoy their favorite beers closer to home when the company moves into the Roundhouse on Main Street. The brewery will use part of the facility to open a brew pub, but will also move its manufacturing operations from Salt Lake City to Evanston. This is a significant win for Evanston for several reasons:

  • Shades Brewing will be a big employer in the area, boosting economic development. 
  • The manufacturing facility will create jobs for residents, along with jobs in the brewpub. 
  • The City of Evanston will grow by collecting sales tax revenue from the company. 
  • Residents can enjoy an improved quality of life as this historic event space continues to be a gathering point to relax after a long day.  

Shades Brewing will move into Roundhouse in 2024. Keep an eye out for job listings and opening day announcements. 

Jumpstart Evanston Continues to Grow

Since 2019, Jumpstart Evanston has provided grant funding and support for entrepreneurs and business owners in the area. This small business incubator program continues to grow as more people want to turn their startup dreams into realities. In 2023, this program provided $15,000 in funding across four businesses. We have set aside a budget of $20,000 for 2024.

Jumpstart Evanston kicked off in January with the next batch of entrepreneurs. Participants will attend learning and development sessions over the next seven weeks and will pitch their final ideas to the public on March 22. Mark your calendars to see how Evanston residents are creating innovative businesses. 

Evanston EDO and Visit Evanston Received Website Revamps

Evanston EDO has a new website that has resources for small business owners while providing demographic data for site selectors. Whether you operate a business in the area and want to grow or are considering expanding to our region, the Evanston EDO team is here to help.

Visit Evanston also received an updated website that is easy to use, modern, and effective. Anyone who lives in the area knows how beautiful this corner of Wyoming is and it’s time for the rest of the nation to see it, too. Visit Evanston spends $300,000 in tourism marketing each year. Tourists contribute to economic development by paying sales tax and supporting local businesses. Some visitors will even become residents in the near future. 

Grant-Funded Community Development Projects Improved Local Infrastructure 

Our goal at the economic development office is to improve all aspects of Evanston life. One way to achieve this is through grant-funded development projects. Through one grant, residents can look forward to the development of a public courtyard and a trailhead at the Roundhouse in the coming year, along with other beautification projects that also increase infrastructure usability. 

“Anytime we can beautify public infrastructure it adds a level of community pride,” says Rocco O’Neill, Community and Economic Development Director at the City of Evanston. “It makes you feel good about the government when it is spending money on bridges and roads and streets.” 

Watch Evanston Grow in 2024

These are just a few of the highlights from the Evanston EDO in the past year. We are bringing businesses to the region, supporting local entrepreneurs, and boosting the quality of life for all who live here. Follow us this year and see how you can get involved in local economic development. Together, we can make Evanston a great place to live, work, and play.