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July 21: MCity Opening Advances State’s Role as Epicenter for Next-Generation Vehicle Research and Development

MCity Opening Advances State’s Role as Epicenter for Next-Generation Vehicle Research and Development

Michigan’s commitment to becoming the global leader in next-generation mobility research and development received a big boost this week with the opening of the University of Michigan’s MCity test track in Ann Arbor. The track’s 32 acres include urban and suburban simulations for connected and autonomous vehicles, complete with streets, intersections, traffic lights, sidewalks and construction obstacles. The opening of MCity aligns with the recently announced Michigan Mobility Initiative, led by the Detroit Regional Chamber’s MICHauto program, and is a positive step forward to ensuring the state and region are well positioned to compete in the area of smart and connected mobility.

The state’s connected culture will be a key focus at this year’s MICHauto Summit, held in conjunction with the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI), on Sept. 30 at Cobo Center. Announced speakers include: Kevin Kerrigan, senior vice president of the State of Michigan’s Automotive Office; Andreas Mai, director of smart connected vehicles for Cisco Systems Inc.; and Kirk Steudle, director of the Michigan Department of Transportation. For more information and a complete list of speakers, click here.

Chamber Partners Sign Collaborative Agreement to Promote Trade, Business Along I-69 Corridor

Echoing the efforts of the Detroit Regional Chamber to promote Southeast Michigan’s assets among the national and international business community, members of the I-69 International Trade Corridor Next Michigan Development Corporation recently signed a regional marketing agreement to expand promotion of the region’s road, rail air and water assets along the I-69 Corridor. The agreement extends previous brand messaging among Shiawassee, Genesee, Lapeer and St. Clair counties to the cities of Charlotte, Coldwater and Marshall in order to create one cohesive message that promotes the Corridor’s benefits to both existing companies considering an expansion, as well as new companies.

Earlier this year, members of the I-69 Trade Corridor, including the Shiawassee Economic Development Partnership, Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce, Lapeer Development Corporation and Economic Development Alliance of St. Clair, along with seven additional key Chamber economic development organizations representing Southeast Michigan, signed a protocol agreement to continue to collaborate on business attraction efforts designed to bring increased national and foreign investment to the region. In signing the protocol, the partners acknowledged that regional messaging and coordinated outreach adds value and impact to business attraction efforts and strategies – ultimately creating more awareness, deal flow and investment.

Leadership Detroit’s East Meets West Program to Explore Innovative Solutions for Michigan’s Comeback

Leadership Detroit, an initiative of the Detroit Regional Chamber, is partnering with Leadership Grand Rapids to provide graduates of both programs a holistic view of challenges critical to Michigan’s ongoing resurgence.

“East Meets West” will focus on the question, “What are the keys to leading in the Detroit and Grand Rapids regions?” The program will foster a robust dialogue of best practices among seasoned leaders, increase understanding of the challenges, opportunities and inner-workings of each region, and collaborate to build an alignment on statewide issues to support the state as a whole.

The program will take place Oct. 8-9 in Detroit and Nov. 5-6 in Grand Rapids. For more information or to register, click here. Attendees must be either a graduate of Leadership Detroit or Leadership Grand Rapids.

Hiring Our Heroes Seeks Employers for Aug. 20 Job Fair

The Detroit Regional Chamber and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation are seeking employers to participate in the upcoming “Hiring Our Heroes” job fair from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 20 at Comerica Park benefiting active and retired military veterans and their spouses.

The job fair is a positive example of Michigan’s willingness, echoed during the 2014 Mackinac Policy Conference, to put military veterans back to work in order to capitalize on their job-ready skills that can help the state succeed in the global economy. The Chamber remains committed to helping veterans succeed in Michigan’s workforce. For more information or to sign up for the event, visit