Progress Updates

In March 2017, we released DC’s new economic strategy, our roadmap for how we are growing DC’s economy and ensuring that all Washingtonians have the opportunity to make a living in it.  This page highlights progress being made on the strategy’s 43 initiatives.

SolarWorks DC

July 2017: Mayor Bowser launched Solar Works DC, an eco-friendly program to install solar panels in the homes of nearly 300 low-income residents, reducing expenses to nearly $600 annually.  Solar Works DC will also provide job training for more than 200 Marion S. Barry Summer Youth Employment Program (MBSYEP) participants.  Click here for the full press release.

May 2017: GRID Alternatives Mid-Atlantic was awarded a $950,000 grant to train 75 District residents for solar careers and install solar systems for up to 100 low-income households in year one. Click here for the full press release.

Resilient DC

July 2017: Mayor Bowser appointed longtime US Housing and Urban Development (HUD) policy strategist Kevin Bush as DC’s first Chief Resilience Officer (CRO).  Read more here.

May 2017: Resilient DC created and convened a Resilience Cabinet, identified resilience priorities based on stakeholder input, and launched the search for a chief resilience officer.

February 2017: Mayor Bowser launched DC’s resilience effort with 100 Resilient Cities.

Maker Space

July 2017: Published “Innovation Space and Marketplace Report: Developing a Makerspace in the District” report.  This report is one of the first steps necessary to plan and develop the Innovation Space and Marketplace.  The analysis in the report will help DMPED and other DC agencies develop a makerspace that will best meet the District’s goals and stakeholder needs.  Read the full report here.

Permitting and Licensing Systems Redesign

July 2017: At Form-a-Palooza residents and design & behavioral science experts reworked the following forms using design thinking: 1) DC Driver License and Identification Card Application 2) Basic Business License EZ 3) TANF Job Search Logs 4) Disability Services Intake Application 5) Lead Disclosure Form.  This initiative was led by The Lab @ DC. Read more here.

International Tourism Catalysts

July 2017: Air India’s nonstop flight from Delhi to Dulles begins.  Read more here.

June 2017: DC hosted IPW, the largest international travel show, for the first time.  The event attracted more than 6,400 attendees from 70 countries, including more than 1,300 international and domestic travel buyers, and a record 530 journalists from the US and abroad.  According to US Travel, IPW is expected to generate $1.7 billion in economic impact to the District and attract more than 1 million visitors to the region during that time.

February 2017: Nonstop service between Delhi and Dulles was announced.  The new route, which will offer three nonstop flights per week starting in July 2017, is estimated to bring $10 million to the District in total economic impact and $30 million annually to the region. Click here for the full press release.

DC Procurement Technical Assistance Center

June 2017: DC Procurement Technical Assistance Center hosted the 2017 DC PTAC Small Business Summit .  The summit connected local small businesses with the resources and contracts needed to successfully navigate procurement opportunities.

Aspire for Entrepreneurship

June 2017: The second Aspire cohort graduated.

March 2017: Launched second cohort and received a $10,000 US Conference of Mayors (USCM) DollarWise innovation grant to help expand the program.  Click here for more information.

Global Center of Mobility Tech + Policy

June 2017: DC was chosen as one of 5 global cities by Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Aspen Institute to prepare for the future of driverless or AV technologies in a pilot program.  They recently launched this portal where you can share your thoughts on how autonomous vehicles can improve how we serve our communities.

January 2017: DC hosted the first MobilityTalks International conference, a forum designed for governments from around the world to exchange ideas on best practices related to the emerging trends in transportation surrounding connected and autonomous vehicles. Deputy Mayor Kenner served as a panelist.


May 2017: Engaged hundreds of residents in over 50 innoMAYtion events throughout the city and notched 12 million social media impressions in May, a 4.5 million increase from 2016.

Mentoring for Mature Businesses

May 2017: The Deputy Mayor’s Office for Great Economic Opportunity partnered with Project 500, Washington Area Community Investment Fund (Wacif), and Latino Economic Development Center (LEDC) and JPMorgan Chase & Co. to launch Ascend 2020 DC.  Ascend 2020 DC is an initiative to accelerate the growth of minority-, women- and veteran-owned small businesses by extending entrepreneurial support systems to underserved entrepreneurs and neighborhoods in DC.

May 2017: Project 500 completed its first year of operation, marking more than 260 enrolled businesses that on average increased revenue by 15%.

Great Streets

May 2017: Launched the Neighborhood Prosperity Fund, a pilot program that provides funding for non-residential components of mixed-use projects in underserved neighborhoods in the District — specifically, census tracts where unemployment rates are 10% or greater.

DC Fed Tech

May 2017: Completed first cohort of DC Fed Tech, a pilot to connect DC entrepreneurs with inventors from federal labs to advance tech transfer – a major driver of innovation.

District Open Data Policy

May 2017: Mayor Bowser announced DC Government’s new Data Policy.  Under the new Data Policy, District agency data will be open to the public by default to the fullest extent consistent with safety, privacy, and security.  Check out hundreds of DC government datasets at Open Data DC.

Exports and Middle East Investment

April 2017:  Deputy Mayor Kenner led the District’s first trade mission to the Middle East, covering Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Doha.

Major Conventions

April 2017: TechWeek, the nation’s leading technology conference and festival, announced that it is coming to DC for the first time.

Inclusive Innovation Incubator (IN3)

April 2017: In3 celebrated its grand opening, officially opening its doors on April 17, 2017 and hosting a “Week of Welcome” that drew nearly 800 community participants.

Retention, Expansion and Attraction Coordinating Committee

April 2017: The working group convened for the first time in April.

Business Supports Navigator

March 2017: DMPED launched, a comprehensive, searchable database of over 80 incentives and other funding-related programs available through District Government.