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Pasco to open new business incubator this fall

Space under construction at The Grove in Wesley Chapel.

WESLEY CHAPEL — Entrepreneurs looking for a jumpstart for their business will have a new option come this fall thanks to the Pasco Economic Development Council.

The council is opening SMARTstart at The Grove in Wesley Chapel, its third entrepreneur center and business incubator location in Pasco County. Construction is underway and expected to be ready by fall.

The facility will include 10 private offices, 32 dedicated desks, a co-working lounge, huddle rooms, executive board room, digital media studio, as well as classroom and meeting space. Another benefit for SMARTstart members is access to additional entrepreneur support organizations that help small businesses start and grow.

Pasco County food entrepreneurs will be able to participate in a pop-up shop at KRATE, a unique shipping container development on site at The Grove, according to a press release from the Economic Development Council.

“The new SMARTstart Incubator at The Grove will play an important role in the continued growth of our small business community,” said Pasco County Commission Chairman Mike Moore. “This is another example of the excellent partnership between Pasco County and the Pasco Economic Development Council to make our community the premier place for business.”

The location will be surrounded by other new development, including a walkable food and entertainment district.

“A major part of what the Pasco EDC does is work with existing Pasco County businesses to understand their needs and be able to respond and offer programs which will help them continue to grow,” said Bill Cronin, President/CEO, Pasco EDC. “Our SMARTstart Program specifically works with start-ups and small businesses in the community, and this new center fits very well with not only new tech start-ups but also trendy foodie-type businesses growing in the area.”