Amazon has included Austin in its shortlist of 20 cities that might get the online retail giant’s 2nd HQ, the Austin American Statesman reports.
Amazon plans to put $5 billion dollars into their 2nd Headquarters and will hire 50,000 professional workers at high salaries in whatever city they land. The goal is an “HQ2” that equals their current Seattle offices.
238 cities in the US, Canada and Mexico put their hats into the ring in 2017. Requirements that Amazon set forth included a population of more than one million people and a city that was already attracting employees in the tech sector.
Austin doesn’t plan to give Amazon any local financial incentives, but the Texas governor Greg Abbott has said that it will put forth its own incentives for any Texas city applying to be the new Amazon HQ. Dallas also made the top 20 cities.
Mayor Steve Adler told Amazon that Amazon and Austin could work together on mobility and affordability issues if the city is picked. After Amazon announced that Austin made the shortlist, the Mayor said Austin would have to look closely at the pros and cons of having a huge project like Amazon’s 2nd Headquarters come here.
The Governor issued a statement saying he is very excited about Austin and Dallas making the cut and thinks Texas is an ideal location for the new HQ.
The other cities on the list are: Atlanta; Columbus, Ohio; Chicago; Indianapolis; Denver, Colorado; Nashville, Tennessee; Montgomery County, Maryland; Northern Virginia; Los Angeles; Boston; New York; Newark, New Jersey; Philadelphia; Pittsburgh; Washington, D.C.; Raleigh, North Carolina; Miami; and Toronto. Amazon plans to name the chosen city later in 2018.
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Austin has been named one of the ten hottest housing markets in the country, Culturemap Austin reports.
Zillow ranked US cities on metrics including home value and rent forecasts, income and population growth, current unemployment rates, and the number of job openings per person from Glassdoor to come up with a “hotness” score.
Austin’s hotness score put us in the 6th spot. As far as what neighborhoods are projected to see the biggest growth? Zillow said Pecan Springs Springdale, MLK, Montopolis, West Congress, and Coronado Hills will see their home values increase the most.
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Austin made Trulia’s list of best housing markets for millennials, Business Insider reports.
Austin grabbed the 7th spot on their list of biggest markets poised for growth. Trulia looked at several key metrics: job growth, vacancy rates, the affordability of a starter-home, online listing searches, and the percentage of people living there that are younger than 35.
Austin’s job growth was 2.3%, the share of income needed to buy a home is 47.5% and 26.3% of Austin’s population is under 35.
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Two Austin neighborhoods made a list of the 25 hottest neighborhoods in the country, the Austin American Statesman reports.
Austin’s Holly neighborhood nabbed the 12th spot on the list, scoring high on the budget, weather, and walkability measures of the ranking.
Central East Austin was named the 10th hottest neighborhood in the US and did well in the same categories as Holly. Both scored low in the entertainment measure.
The list took into account walkability, transit, budget, entertainment, lifestyle, and weather, These were measured by examining how many bars and restaurants were in a neighborhood, local taxes, how severe the seasons were, and pet friendliness.
Houston’s Lower Westheimer neighborhood was the only other area in Texas to make the cut.
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A recent survey found that Austin has the 2nd best economy in the United States, only beat out by Provo, Utah, the Austin Business Journal reports.
Austin had been number one for the past two years. The cities are ranked using numbers from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, and the U.S. Census Bureau.
Austin added 275,000 new people to the city in the past half decade, which is a 15.5 population increase. 2,900 jobs were added in the private sector each month since 2012, which is a growth rate of 26 percent.
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Lonely Planet named the South First Street area in Austin one of the ten best places in the country to go right now, Austin 360 reports.
Lonely Planet cites Bouldin Creek Cafe and Torchy’s Tacos as destinations and applauds the casual, easy vibe of South First Street in direct contrast to the trendiness of South Congress.
They also suggest taking the CapMetro Bus 10 or renting a B-cycle to spend a day exploring the boutiques, vintage shops and bakeries along the street, and of course recommend a stop by the ubiquitous “Greetings from Austin” mural at the corner of Annie and South First.
For lodging, Lonely Planet recommends South Congress Hotel or a local house or room rented via Air BnB or Home Away.
The other destinations in the country that Lonely Planet said were must visits are East Liberty and Lawrenceville, Pittsburgh; Avondale, Chicago; Point Loma, San Diego; East Nashville, Nashville; Capitol Riverfront and Yards Park, Washington D.C.; Montavilla, Portland; and River North, Denver.
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Austin was named the best “non-gateway city” for commercial real estate investment, the Austin Business Journal reports. (Gateway is New York and Los Angeles.)
DLA Piper’s Annual State of the Market named Austin the best city for commercial real estate investment in the country. They asked 220 executives in the real estate biz from the best real estate firms in the country where they thought the best city was for investment and 45% of them said Austin. That puts Austin on top, tied with Seattle.
Denver and Nashville tied for the next spot with 33% of the respondents naming them both great investment cities.
Chinese investors are the biggest foreign investor in the US market. In Austin, a Chinese firm is partnering with a domestic one on the construction of 70 Rainey.
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Austin’s Gross Domestic Product was the 2nd highest in the nation, the Austin American Business Journal reports.
The Gross Domestic Product measures the total amount of all the goods and services that come out of the Austin metro area and was $125.8 billion in 2016, up 4.9 percent from 2015’s $119.9 billion.
The San Francisco Bay area beat out Austin in the rankings of metros with a population of at least 2 million.
Austin’s growth was strongest in the professional and business services sector, as well as finance and real estate. Construction, trade and information were also robust. The biggest drop in GDP was in the energy and durable-goods manufacturing industries.
Out of the United States’ 382 metropolitan areas, 267 saw an increase in their real GDP. The average rise was 1.7 percent.
In Texas, GDP in Dallas was up 3 percent in 2016, but Houston’s was down 3 percent due to slowdowns in the energy industry.
Austin may have had the best growth in the country last year, but it was the smallest increase in Austin since 2012. The Austin Metro Area’s growth has been super fast since 2011. GDP was $93.4 billion that year.
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Austin came in as the top fun city in Texas in WalletHub’s new study, the Austin American Statesman reports.
It’s probably not surprising to most Texans that we beat out other cities like Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio. However Austinites who like to have a good time may be surprised by the fact that Austin was listed as just the 18th most fun city in the country.
Austin did okay in the Nightlife and Parties category, coming in at number 17, and slightly worse in the Entertainment and Recreation category, snagging the 24th spot, its ranking was tanked by its showing in the costs category: 50th.
Wondering where the most fun is to be had in the US? That would be Las Vegas, Orlando and New York. The least fun cities? Brownsville and Oxnard, California.
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After being number one for the past two years on the Kauffman Foundation’s ranking of the best cities to start a new business, Austin has fallen to the number two spot, the Austin Business Journal reports.
There were 51 new small business owners for every 100,000 residents in the Austin area in 2016 and there were 104.5 new businesses for every 1,000 businesses. Miami edged Austin out slightly to nab the top spot.
Rounding out the top five cities for entrepreneurs are Los Angeles, San Diego, and Las Vegas.
Across the country, a little less than a third of adults started new companies each month last year, which is roughly 310 out of every 100,000 people. This is slightly down from 2015, but more than 2013.
The number of women entrepreneurs declined, but the ethnic diversity of those starting new businesses is increasing.
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