MARCH 16, 2005

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Oklahoma Center for Rural Development to launch MapInfo location-based
economic development Web site

The Oklahoma Center for Rural Development at Northeastern State University recently announced the launch of a program and Web site that will help developers and business owners attract new business to Oklahoma.

Based on location technology from MapInfo Corporation, the Web site provides public access to economic development information about the state. The site is designed to help businesses determine their potential success in Oklahoma, by providing a variety of information, including retail, demographic, industrial, small business traffic, tourism, healthcare and educational data received from various state and local agencies.

Business owners, economic development staff and the public can visit the new online portal to identify ways to help existing businesses grow through location-based intelligence as well as aid in recruiting outside businesses to come to Oklahoma. For instance, rather than visiting multiple Web sites or making numerous phone calls, an outside developer can use the new site to quickly determine if there are enough schools, medical facilities and hotels to support the influx of workers who would be moving into a given area when a new company is opening. If more medical facilities are needed, a state grant writer can then use the site to gather the necessary information, such as age of population, income level, health conditions already reported in the county, and number of healthcare providers, hospital beds and nurses, to apply for a federal grant. A new healthcare facility or provider would add even more jobs to the region, improving the business environment.

Contact: Nancy Garber, 1-918-456-5511, ext. 2885