It’s been nearly a year since we announced we were building Attesa and, in addition to the many tasks and processes necessary to complete the entitlements phase, some members of the team have been hitting the summit circuit.

As in the Arizona Tech Innovation Summit, the Pinal Business and Education Summit, the Arizona Builder’s Exchange Metro Phoenix Development Summit, and others.

The take away has been clear.  If the great state of Arizona is going to grow, if companies, individuals and families are going to buy land to build factories, retail businesses, homes, restaurants, multiplex theaters and anything else that requires a footprint, we have to invest in education, first and foremost.

Or, as Dr. Jacquelyn Elliott, President of Central Arizona College says, “Nothing is more important to economic development than education.”

And real estate and economic development go hand in hand.  Especially at Attesa.

With over 2500 acres of land planned for development, Attesa will be offering all kinds of real estate for sale or lease.  We’re going to have luxury homes, some with helipads and hangars, on large acreage lots, plus single family homes, two and three story ‘Garage Majals’ and higher density housing, like apartments and condos.  Perhaps even dormitories.

We’ll also have industrial and commercial parcels, an air strip, and over 900 acres of race tracks, including a 300 room hotel, 30,000 sq. ft. conference center and a 1.2 million sq. ft. plaza.  

Truth be told, the great majority of our land is going to be dedicated to good old fashioned capitalism.  A study compiled by Elliott D. Pollack & Associates shows we’ll create over $1.7 billion in economic impact per year after buildout.

That’s a lot of jobs and money and annual spending when the project is fully complete.  And it actually started two years ago, when Danrick Builders bought the first 1800 acres of land toward developing Attesa.

But the one key to our success, and the success and prosperity of Casa Grande, Maricopa and the other cities in the area, is educating our citizens (and please excuse the expression) ‘from cradle to grave.’

Here’s an important fact.  90% of a child’s critical brain development happens by the age of five. 

So the education of our masses has to begin early and essentially last forever; human beings are pre-disposed to strive toward some kind of goal for as long as they have breath and when skills need to change, education is how change occurs.

At one summit Governor Doug Ducey and ASU President Michael M. Crow addressed the fact that entrepreneurs, venture capital firms, hedge fund managers, etc. are strongly interested in promoting business in the Arizona Sun Corridor.

Their priorities, at present, are promoting education re: technology, financial instruments and more to attract investment in Arizona.

They get it. 

Education is critically necessary for our future.  Technology is advancing at unprecedented speed; robotics are taking over some jobs but people have to be educated in order to build, operate, maintain and repair those machines.  Skills that may become common in the short term have not been identified yet, and then who knows how long they’ll be relevant?

Then there’s soft skills, or a combination of interpersonal people and social skills, communications skills, character traits, attitudes, career attributes, social and emotional intelligence, etc. that will allow human beings to assess their professional environment, play well with others, and achieve their personal goals.

The National Business Education Association deems soft skills as critical for being industrious in today’s workplace. A study conducted by Harvard University noted that only 20% of achievements in career are determined by hard skills while 80% are determined by soft skills, including:

  1. Communication – oral, speaking capability, written, presenting, listening.
  2. Courtesy – manners, etiquette, business etiquette, gracious, says please and thank you, respectful.
  3. Flexibility – adaptability, willing to change, lifelong learner, accepts new things, adjusts, teachable.
  4. Integrity – honest, ethical, high morals, has personal values, does what’s right.
  5. Interpersonal skills – nice, personable, sense of humor, friendly, nurturing, empathetic, has self-control, patient, sociability, warmth, social skills.
  6. Positive attitude – optimistic, enthusiastic, encouraging, happy, confident.
  7. Professionalism – businesslike, well-dressed, appearance, poised.
  8. Responsibility – accountable, reliable, gets the job done, resourceful, self-disciplined, wants to do well, conscientious, common sense.
  9. Teamwork – cooperative, gets along with others, agreeable, supportive, helpful, collaborative.
  10. Work ethic – hard working, willing to work, loyal, initiative, self-motivated, on time, good attendance.

Writer/Comedian/Director Woody Allen once said, “80 percent of success is just showing up” but that no longer applies.  People have to show up, be proficient at what they do and have ALL the skills necessary toward achieving goals set by themselves and/or their employers.

Attesa understands and agrees with this premise, which is why we say the three most important things in real estate are education, education and education.