ARIZONA NEWS

Phoenix ranked among top 10 large cities in nation for economic vitality

Feb 19, 2021, 4:05 AM
(Facebook Photo/City of Phoenix, AZ USA)...
(Facebook Photo/City of Phoenix, AZ USA)
(Facebook Photo/City of Phoenix, AZ USA)

PHOENIX — Driven by population and employment growth with an increasing high-tech industrial base, Phoenix has climbed into the top 10 best-performing large cities nationwide based on economic vitality.

The index, conducted by The Milken Institute, relies on an outcomes-based set of metrics that focuses on job creation, output growth and wage gains — especially in high-technology sectors — to evaluate the performance of cities and how the areas promote economic vitality relative to peers.

Phoenix rose to No. 7 in the latest index, up from No. 12 in last year’s report.

The metro area continues to grow at unprecedented rates, according to the index, with top-tier one-year job growth (No. 6) and wage growth (No. 15).

Phoenix and the surrounding area’s expanding high-tech economy also boosted the ranking, with its seven high-tech industries ranking No. 37 and high-tech GDP concentration bumping up five spots to No. 47.

The index notes a deeper investment in communication equipment manufacturing and computer systems design would further strengthen the Valley’s high-tech foothold.

Along with the increasing number of high-tech companies in the area, The Valley of the Sun is also attracting people from all over the country to enjoy its weather and amenities.

The index found a significant increase of people moving from the western states to the Valley in recent years, which is boosting housing consumption and construction.

Total housing permits in the Phoenix area rose 29.9% year-over-year as of September of last year despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, according to the study, while jobless rates also remained lower than the U.S. average.

Phoenix’s population boom and housing rush could also hurt its ranking in the future, the index noted, if rent and housing price increases continue.

Rent in the Valley grew as much as 7% year-over-year in 2019, according to the study, with home values rising 5.8%.

The area’s relative housing affordability also ranks in the middle-of-the-pack compared to other large cities and the cost of living is only 3.6% below the national average, according to the index.

The Milken Institute recommends proactive investment in affordable housing stock to help prevent Phoenix from losing its competitive advantage as a cost-effective, livable city.

Tucson also made the list as a tier two large city, moving up 36 spots from last year to No. 41.

A handful of areas across Arizona were also mentioned in the index as part of a separate best-performing small cities ranking.

Lake Havasu City was the highest-ranked Arizona small city at No. 16, followed by Prescott Valley (No. 25), Yuma (No. 66), Sierra Vista (No. 100) and Flagstaff (No. 169).

The No. 1 large city belongs to Provo-Orem, Utah, according to the index, while the top small city is Idaho Falls, Idaho.

Lifetime Windows & Doors

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(Facebook Photo/Big Bounce America)...
KTAR.com

Walking on air: World’s biggest bounce house lands in Glendale

Adults and kids alike in metro Phoenix can get the jump on fun at the world's biggest bounce house over the next three weekends.
1 day ago
FILE - In this May 24, 2004 file photo, a Mount Graham red squirrel darts through trees on Mount Gr...
Associated Press

Endangered red squirrel found in Arizona sees increase in population

The latest survey shows another increase in the population of the endangered Mount Graham red squirrel in the Pinaleno Mountains of Arizona.
1 day ago
(Pexels Photo)...
KTAR.com

Body of man believed to be set on fire found near downtown Phoenix

The body of a man who was believed to be set on fire was found Thursday near downtown Phoenix, authorities said.
1 day ago
(Pexels Photo)...
KTAR.com

Man killed in Phoenix drive-by shooting, suspect at large

Suspects remain outstanding, and detectives with the Phoenix Police Department's Homicide Bureau have taken over the investigation. 
1 day ago
(Facebook Photo/Cochise County - Government)...
Taylor Kinnerup

Arizona’s News Roundup: The latest from Cochise County, Biden’s upcoming Arizona trip and more

Arizona’s News Roundup breaks down the latest happenings in Cochise County, President Joe Biden's upcoming visit to the state and more.
1 day ago
Republican Supervisors Tom Crosby and Peggy Judd (Cochise County Photos)...
Kevin Stone

Hobbs’ office wants Brnovich to investigate Cochise County GOP officials

The Arizona Secretary of State’s Office wants the attorney general to investigate whether Cochise County officials broke the law by delaying their election canvass.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

(Desert Institute for Spine Care photo)...
DESERT INSTITUTE FOR SPINE CARE

Why DISC is world renowned for back and neck pain treatments

Fifty percent of Americans and 90% of people at least 50 years old have some level of degenerative disc disease.
(Photo via MLB's Arizona Fall League / Twitter)...
Arizona Fall League

Top prospects to watch at this year’s Arizona Fall League

One of the most exciting elements of the MLB offseason is the Arizona Fall League, which began its 30th season Monday.
...
Quantum Fiber

Stream 4K and more with powerful, high-speed fiber internet

Picking which streaming services to subscribe to are difficult choices, and there is no room for internet that cannot handle increased demands.
Phoenix ranked among top 10 large cities in nation for economic vitality