Out of Control Policy Blog

Nashville's smokin' hot!

Another interesting piece from Expansion Management magazine...they've released the results of their annual "America's 50 Hottest Cities" survey, and Nashville, TN comes out on top:

    The perception of Nashville began to change when Nashville-Davidson County, along with nine other counties in the region, pooled their resources together to create a regional economic development initiative, Partnership 2000.

    Since the partnership (since renamed Partnership 2010) began, the region has seen a radical transformation in economic development. That transformation has resulted in more than 350 companies relocating their corporate headquarters to Nashville; numerous high-skill and high-wage manufacturing projects, including several automotive plants, have relocated to the metro; the population of the region has risen from No. 53 in the country to No. 38; and income growth has risen from No. 138 to No. 49.

    . . . .

    At a time when many cities are struggling to create new jobs, the Nashville metro added more than 11,300 jobs to its work force in the fiscal year ending in July 2003. Of cities of similar size, only Orlando, Fla., (20,364) added more jobs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

    Many of the new jobs being created in Nashville come the relocation of corporate headquarters. The metro has put headquarters projects, and their high-skill, high-paying jobs, at the tope of its economic development priorities.

Read the whole article. There's an interesting bit on the significance of the Nashville metro area's 19 colleges and universities on the relocation decision process. Business leaders understandably savor the prospect of access to a large pool of highly educated job candidates.

And check out the full top-50 list here. The rankings are developed based on interviews with dozens of site location consultants to gauge which cities their clients find most attractive for business expansion or relocation purposes. The consultants consider such factors as the business climate, political climate, work force quality, operating costs, and incentive programs.

More from the survey:

    Metros in the southern and western United States dominate this year's "Hot Cities." Of the top 25 cities, only two are not from those regions –Indianapolis (tied for No. 4) and Pittsburgh (No. 23).

    Texas has five "Hot Cities" metros, while South Carolina had four cities. Five states – Alabama, Florida, New York, Virginia and Tennessee – each had three cities.

UPDATE: Also, if you're interested in logistics, EM also has released their list of the 100 most logistics friendly metros. Logistics deal with those significant factors influencing business location and operation, such as road network; work force; labor costs; infrastructure and spending; road density/congestion; and air, rail, and water access.

Leonard Gilroy is Director of Government Reform


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