The Land Use Integrity Project has taken a look at Forbes’s latest list of the fastest growing metros in the US and reached some conclusions about how those metros got to the top of the heap:
[The] key takeaways from the Forbes list are that an educated workforce and diverse economy help attract new business and keep unemployment low. However, a city’s climate and the surrounding landscape also play a huge role in economic expansion. There’s no denying that Orlando (No. 9) or Salt Lake City (No. 5) are great places to live and work, thus their allure for thousands of educated workers and businesses looking to expand.
Cities lacking the beauty of Provo, Utah (No. 13) or the mild weather of Charlotte, N.C. (No. 8) should pay attention. To compete with metros blessed by Mother Nature, other cities will need to find creative ways to attract a talented workforce and employers. Metro areas that offer affordable housing and ease of access to retail and recreational amenities do a better job of attracting and retaining a skilled workforce. Mixed-use developments have helped cities like Cleveland and New Orleans recover from economic disaster and rebuild their downtowns by attracting talented young professionals.
You can read their full analysis here.