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Plattsburgh's success story

Posted by Matt Ryan on



20 years ago a lot of people who lived in the greater Plattsburgh area were worried about their future.

The Department of Defense shuttered the air force base, an important part of the community fabric.  Built during the Cold War, the base provided jobs and the personnel provided a huge boost to the local economy.  After its closure, business leaders got together and came up with a plan to help save their city and surrounding towns and for the most part it's worked. 

Earlier this year, a publication of the Financial Times of London ranked Plattsburgh the second best "Micro American City of the Future," only behind Greenville, South Carolina.  Its ranking was based on a number of criteria including economic potential, connectivity and foreign direct investment strategy.  Plattsburgh's geographical location, just one hour from Montreal, is something that local leaders have used to their advantage.

We talked to local leaders about the bright economic outlook, a rarity in upstate.  We also sat down with former Congressman Bill Owens, a Plattsburgh native and former Air Force Captain, about how the city was able to rebound from the devastating closure of the base.  Finally, we discussed North Country politics with longtime Champlain Valley journalist Thom Hallock.

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