Suffolk’s technology corridor

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Forbes’ visit highlights the city’s growth potential in the north

By Allison T. Williams

The city’s emerging modeling and simulation industry is Suffolk’s golden egg, said U.S. Rep. J. Randy Forbes, R-Va.

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The &uot;technology corridor&uot; on U.S. Route 17 in north Suffolk has major businesses – the U.S. Joint Forces Command Joint Warfighting Center, Virginia Modeling Analysis and Computer Simulation Center, Lake View Technology Center and Lockheed Martin.

&uot;There are localities around the country that would die to have what Suffolk has,&uot; said Forbes, speaking to the Suffolk City Council during a meeting Tuesday morning.

&uot;If we miss this window and the opportunity goes by us, we’ll be fools if nothing else,&uot; Forbes said. &uot;We will have missed a great economic engine.

&uot;We are spending a great deal of time making sure that doesn’t happen.&uot;

For example, Forbes recently spearheaded the formation of the Congressional Modeling and Simulation Training Caucus. The caucus is meant to give vendors and contractors the chance to let lawmakers know what they need to be successful, he added.

Forbes said he is dedicated to doing whatever he can to grow the modeling and simulation industry in Suffolk and surrounding localities.

It’s important that the city has the necessary infrastructure, including high-speed Internet capability, to attract modeling and simulation businesses.

Also, Forbes said, he is gearing up to go to California to speak with two companies interested in relocating to Suffolk.