Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
1. What is Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector?
Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector is a website that allows users to identify available commercial property. The website also provides data including workforce demographics, business information, and interactive maps. The data is created and displayed using a Geographic Information System (GIS) that combines layers of information in order to better understand comprehensive details about a specific location and is powered by GIS Planning's ZoomProspector software. The website is provided by the Northwest Commission, and is FREE.
2. How are commercial properties listed in Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector?
Any commercial broker, property owner, developer, or similar real estate entity can list available commercial or industrial property. There is no cost to participate. Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector serves as a free, dynamic and comprehensive listing system for brokers and interested companies. With their informed list of leads, website visitors can contact the respective brokers directly about specific properties. Linked to the Northwest Commission frequently-trafficked website, Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector promotes the properties listed by real estate professionals. Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector also provides critical business data giving enormous exposure to listed properties and real estate brokerage firms.
3. How do commercial real estate professionals get access to Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector?
It is as easy as 1-2-3. (1) The company calls Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector Staff at
4. How do users access Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector?
The public can view and use Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector by visiting the website at Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector The easy-to-use, browser format lets anyone with an Internet connection use the Web to access Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector's maps, properties and GIS-based data.
5. How is Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector different than other site selection sites/services?
Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector is unique. In addition to the commercial property listings and the current-year demographic and economic information that is available, Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector offers access to a breadth of important proprietary local data that is critical to relocation and/or expansion decisions. Business site selection is not just about available commercial buildings. The reason people say real estate is all about "location, location, location" is because it is. By using GIS, a business is able to analyze and evaluate the site-specific advantages and opportunities of each unique business location.
6. What type of properties will be listed?
Commercial, industrial and retail properties will be catalogued and displayed on Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector.
7. How will the website connect interested parties to the listing broker?
The contact information, which is entered by the real estate professional, accompanies each property listing. After entering the listing, along with any additional information (such as photos or other documents), the real estate professional can then update the information - which immediately places the listing on Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector and can be viewed on the map.
8. What types of companies are using Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector?
Commercial and retail firms large and small are taking advantage of this free service.
9. How often will data be updated?
Commercial real estate professionals can update their data 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, so the inventory of available properties can remain current. Demographic data, consumer expenditure data, business and workforce data will all be updated yearly providing the most up-to-date information available. Some data will be updated as frequently as necessary to maintain a current and robust database.
10. What kind of information can users access?
Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector offers site location data and demographic information. The asking price, square footage, property description, brokerage company and broker contact information in addition to other vital information will be listed with each property. When considering a specific property, users can also query the demographics, workforce data, and existing market synergy and competition in any radial vicinity of the property. In addition, "layers" of information can be turned on and off on the interactive map display. Individual properties may also include other pertinent information.
11. Why is the Northwest Commission investing in Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector?
The Northwest Commission recognizes the importance of expanding and sustaining its business community and is therefore committed to making "doing business" as easy as possible. Current research suggests that 80 percent of the initial site selection screening is now done through the Internet. With the growing number of people who conduct business on the Internet, Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector provides an invaluable, real-time service to the many businesses that contact the Northwest Commission seeking site selection information.
12. How will companies know about the Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector GIS site? How is the Northwest Commission marketing it?
There is a link to Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector on the Northwest Commission website as well as a link on other frequently trafficked sites. The Northwest Commission and its partners will promote Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector in all marketing materials.
13. What is GIS?
GIS is an abbreviation for the term "Geographic Information System". A GIS combines layers of geographic information about a place that provides better information about that location. In the case of Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector, the Internet-based GIS allows businesses to identify optimal business locations based on available commercial property, location differences, demographic variations and business industry characteristics. Pennsylvania's Great Lakes Prospector allows website users to customize the analysis to their specific needs.
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