“Even though employment is strong in Miami, these jobs offer a great opportunity for folks because they can move up the ladder as they meet certain criteria,” said Daniel Kodsi, a principal of Paramount Ventures, developer of the $600 million Paramount Miami Worldcenter condominium tower, which is scheduled to open this year.
In addition to spearheading job fairs and other initiatives to recruit workers, the local community redevelopment agency used a federal grant to provide training to 30 students through Miami Dade College. Henry Crespo Sr., president of the Development Firm in Miami, a diversity and inclusion hiring consultant on the project, said another training program was being planned.
“The idea is not only to steer residents toward the Worldcenter project,” Mr. Crespo said, “but to also give them the ability to find a career path through construction.”
The project, which is being funded by a voter-approved permanent extension of a 1.75 percent tax on hotels and car rentals, will transform about 250 acres northeast of downtown into a campus for the agricultural organization and its livestock, horse and rodeo events held each January. It will also serve as a hub for education and research on food, water, livestock health, and other agricultural and environmental issues.
The redevelopment is expected to create 1,000 construction jobs, and the city is requiring contractors to recruit in nearby low-income neighborhoods and to reach out to veterans and former prison inmates, said Gretchen Hollrah, executive director of the Mayor’s Office of the National Western Center. WorkNow, an 18-month-old platform of the Center for Workforce Initiatives at the Community College of Denver, is providing hiring support and training for the project and others.
“There are many construction projects in Denver that have really intensified the need for an expanded pipeline of workers,” said Katrina Wert, director of the Center for Workforce Initiatives. “We want to reach populations that haven’t shared in the city’s recent growth and prosperity.”