The South: Next U.S. Boom Towns

It is clear that well-established patterns of job creation and vital demographics will drive future regional growth, not only in the next year, but over the coming decade.

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What cities are best positioned to grow and prosper in the coming decade?

To determine the next boom towns in the U.S., Forbes, with the help of Mark Schill at the Praxis Strategy Group, took the 52 largest metro areas in the country (those with populations exceeding 1 million) and ranked them based on various data indicating past, present and future vitality.

We started with job growth, not only looking at performance over the past decade but also focusing on growth in the past two years, to account for the possible long-term effects of the Great Recession. That accounted for roughly one-third of the score. The other two-thirds were made up of a a broad range of demographic factors, all weighted equally. These included rates of family formation (percentage growth in children 5-17), growth in educated migration, population growth and, finally, a broad measurement of attractiveness to immigrants — as places to settle, make money and start businesses.

Many of our top performers are not surprising. No. 1 Austin, Texas, and No. 2 Raleigh, N.C. Perhaps less expected is the No. 3 ranking for Nashville, Tenn. The country music capital, with its low housing prices and pro-business environment, has experienced rapid growth in educated migrants, where it ranks an impressive fourth in terms of percentage growth. New ethnic groups, such as Latinos and Asians, have doubled in size over the past decade.

Click here for a list of the “Next Biggest Boom Towns in the U.S.”
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Source: Joel Kotkin | Forbes