Tech expert sees promise in Tracy
by Denise Ellen Rizzo
Mar 29, 2013 | 4370 views | 9 9 comments | 17 17 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Vivek Wadhwa talks about the potential for new technology companies to come to Tracy during a question and answer session following the State of the City address on Wednesday, March 27 in the Eleni Tsakopoulos-Kounalakis Theatre at the Grand Theatre Center for the Arts.  Glenn Moore/Tracy Press
Vivek Wadhwa talks about the potential for new technology companies to come to Tracy during a question and answer session following the State of the City address on Wednesday, March 27 in the Eleni Tsakopoulos-Kounalakis Theatre at the Grand Theatre Center for the Arts. Glenn Moore/Tracy Press
Proposals to help Tracy grow and gain interest among Silicon Valley businesses highlighted a question-and-answer session with a national technology leader during the State of the City on Wednesday, March 27.

Vivek Wadhwa, vice president of Innovation and Research at Singularity University, was quizzed by Allen Young, associate editor of Comstock’s Magazine, before a capacity crowd in the Eleni Tsakopoulos-Kounalakis Theatre at the Grand Theater Center for the Arts, 715 Central Ave.

Wadhwa believes Tracy has the opportunity to draw businesses from Silicon Valley by emphasizing the city’s reasonably priced office space as an attractive incentive for start-up companies and investors.

“The location is absolutely amazing,” Wadhwa said. “Tracy has all the nice things of middle America next to Silicon Valley.”

To make Tracy more appealing to young entrepreneurs, he suggested the city offer free office space with high-speed Internet.

Wadhwa said Tracy leaders could help pair seasoned scientists from nearby Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories with students in Tracy to create tomorrow’s innovations.

Parents should encourage children to immerse themselves in technology such as robotics and the building of Internet applications, and become familiar with social media and communication so it becomes second nature.

“Give them tools, and they will do it themselves,” he said.

Wadhwa said the city could easily promote itself on Bay Area billboards. Drivers stuck in traffic have nothing to do but read billboards, he said, and it would give them the opportunity to learn why Tracy is the right place to relocate.

• Contact Denise Ellen Rizzo at 830-4225 or
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April 02, 2013
Every year for the last ten years they get some knucklehead from out of town to tell us high tech is coming. We being hearing Bilbrey then Ives for 10 years saying high tech is coming. You notice that not one told this great assembly at the Stte of the city Address that the majority owners of the Gateway Business Park went bankrupt last month and the bank owns the majority interest now. How come Ives or this expert didnt talk about that.
March 31, 2013
Doors, the commute for the high exec's is where my value of the airport is a viable asset. We have some gorgeous homes in the southern part of Tracy area and they won't have to live near the rest of us.
March 31, 2013
Tech jobs come to Silicon Valley because Standford and Berkeley were/are engineering farms.

Sacramento tried to lure Silicon Valley companies, but they all seem to want to go to Austin, TX.

Unless it is in a cool part of California where people want to live, companies will opt for low cost, low tax, Texas.

No one is going to be setting anything up in Tracy. Accept and move on.
April 01, 2013
Sacramento lured a lot of high tech companies. Intel settles in Folsim. Quit being such a pessimist.
March 30, 2013
I wasn't at his talk, but from the reporting it seems that he failed to mention one of the most important draws that Tracy has: a well-educated technology workforce. I don't know the statistics but we all know that many, many highly educated programmers, engineers, etc. drive over the hill every day to work elsewhere. Isn't one of the main selling points that we have a built-in trained, educated, and experienced workforce already here? Wonder why the guy failed to emphasize that?
March 30, 2013
ronniedes, I think the problem is that while we have the workforce living in Tracy as you just described the corporate executives don't, nor do they want to. They don't want to travel or move from their expensive neighborhoods.

They don't care that we have make the daily trip over the hill in heavy traffic everyday, but they don't want to even though it's in the counter commute on their side of the hill.

Don't get me wrong, I hope someday we do have these techology jobs coming to Tracy, it's just today I have my doubts, but I would love to be wrong.
April 01, 2013
If you build it they will come. :)
March 30, 2013
I opened a business in Tracy about 5 years ago and unless something has changed it was actually pretty easy. If you want to look at a difficult place to open a business try Fremont.
March 29, 2013
This guy is telling them what they want to here. As long as the city continues to be over and above hard to do business with, this city will be what it is now. If you have ever tried to open a business in Tracy, you know what I mean! It is the reason so many places go to Manteca or other surrounding communities. These so called city officials have got to change their ways or nothing will change here in town.

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