On September 24th, the City partnered with the Escondido Chamber of Commerce to hold the 2nd Annual Escondido Business Walk. 12 pairs of volunteers (consisting of one Chamber representative and one City representative) set out with a combined list of 86 businesses. All the businesses had been mailed a notification letter in advance of the visit. This year, we took a "deeper dive" into Escondido's business community, choosing businesses based on specific industries that tend to offer higher paying jobs like manufacturing and professional services rather than businesses with whom we already have strong relationships or that we visited at last year’s Business Walk.

Volunteers made personal contact with 50 businesses, collecting business cards and leaving surveys for the primary contact if they were not available. In-person surveys were completed for 27 of the businesses visited. Final survey results are still being tabulated, but preliminary data are positive, showing that the majority of the businesses surveyed are growing and hiring. Two especially important contacts were made during the Business Walk: one that revealed a specialized manufacturing business outgrowing their space and considering moving out of Escondido, and one business that would like to fund a City park improvement project. City staff members are now working with these businesses. Additionally, innovative businesses that were not previously on the City’s radar will now be featured in Innovate 78 branding activities.

The Escondido Business Walk is a valuable economic development tool, and we appreciate all the volunteers who helped make it happen this year. A final report of the survey data will be ready soon and posted on the City's Web site at https://www.escondido.org/business.aspx.