Greater Hazleton has long been known as the Crossroads of the East – and with good reason.
Not only is this region located within a few hours of half of the nation's population and half of the nation's production, but Greater Hazleton is located at the center of two major highways.
Interstates 80 and 81 — which link New York City with San Francisco, Calif., and Canada with the Gulf of Mexico — intersect six miles from our downtown. The Northeast Extension of the Pennsylvania Turnpike passes about 20 minutes from Hazleton, too.
Combined with many local interchanges on those interstates and our superb state and local highway and street network, businesses located in Greater Hazleton have a tremendous advantage -- access to the arteries of the nation.
Access to roads means access to the major population centers of the Eastern Seaboard.
Greater Hazleton is just over two hours away from the heart of New York City. The ports of Philadelphia are even closer; the centers of Baltimore and Washington, D.C., a little farther.
Closer to home, major stretches of U.S. Route 309 and State Route 93 have become the centers for a growing retail base that has seen major recent development. Some 1,000,000 square feet of new retail and commercial space, virtually all of it occupied, has been developed within the last decade or so, and cooperative local governments are assuring that carefully planned development will continue.
Several years ago, a new interchange (#141) on Interstate 81 between McAdoo and Hazleton opened, providing direct access to the interstate from the south side of the Hazleton area. Development is expected along that road, the Greater Hazleton Chamber of Commerce Beltway, over the next few years.
Greater Hazleton also has a capable, available workforce there to make industries work.
The area is widely recognized for the quality of its workforce. Our employees have been characterized as loyal, ambitious, dedicated, easy to train, and willing to give an honest day's work at competitive wages.
Also powering our local industries is our remarkable infrastructure. Sites throughout the Hazleton area offer abundant, competitively priced electric and natural gas service, clean water, adequate and well-regulated sewage and sanitation, and virtually all of the infrastructure amenities needed for business to grow and prosper.
A progressive and cooperative financial community works closely with industrial and commercial prospects, and a full roster of available local, state and federal programs help prospective new businesses address financial, training and personnel needs.
Some of the country's largest banks and top financial and investment firms maintain offices in the Hazleton area. A core of solid, locally based financial institutions also serves the area. Both provide a full range of personal and corporate banking and investment services.
The community is also fortunate to be the home of numerous locally based economic and community development organizations whose charters combine to provide a full range of services and programs designed to promote business and an enhanced quality of life.
These include the Greater Hazleton Chamber of Commerce, which has been serving business and the community for more than 100 years. The Chamber focuses on business retention and community development issues. It is heavily involved in transportation, government affairs and community development.
Over the years, the Chamber has spun off a number of organizations that today provide specific services to the community. These include the Leadership Hazleton, Junior Leadership and Silver Leadership personal and development programs; Funfest, an annual community festival that attracts tens of thousands to center city; the Mountain Council of Governments, an organization comprised of officials from nearly a dozen local municipalities; and the Greater Hazleton Area Civic Partnership, which is working toward creating a citizen-based addition to the local community development mix.
Also working to better Greater Hazleton is CAN DO, one of the nation's most respected economic development agencies. Mostly volunteer-based, CAN DO has more than 50 years of experience in improving the quality of life -- and helping companies find what they're looking for in a new home.
Together, Greater Hazleton has all the tools necessary to attract, accommodate, and maintain a strong corporate base. We have perfected the art of using those tools to the benefit of the individual business and the community.
If you are interested in visiting the Hazleton area, relocating a business, or simply looking for a wonderful place to raise a family, or even to retire, contact the Greater Hazleton Chamber of Commerce for all the information you need.
The Chamber is located in the heart of center-city Hazleton at the new Citiscape building. Call us at (570) 455-1509 or email us at .