I'm not so sure I think we still have a lot of work to do.
Friday, May 9, 2008 - 2:00 PM EDT
Baltimore, D.C. named top spots for doing business
Baltimore Business Journal - by Tierney Plumb Contributor
Washington, D.C., ranks fifth among 50 U.S. metro areas in the U.S., and Baltimore No. 11, in a study of long-term economic competitiveness.
The 7th annual Metropolitan Area Competitiveness Report by the Beacon Hill Institute at Suffolk University awarded Salt Lake City, Boston and Denver the top three spots, after weighing such factors as security, infrastructure and human resources.
Due to long work commutes and high monthly housing costs, D.C. ranked poorly (No. 48) in the infrastructure category, just behind Boston.
Baltimore, previously a region attached to D.C. in the survey and ranking 14th last year, stands strong on its own this year at No. 11 overall.
"Interestingly D.C., like Boston, has got a good, strong financial sector. Quite a lot of people are setting up businesses despite the high costs. Entrepreneurial activity is vigorous in D.C.," said Jonathan Haughton, co-author of the report.
D.C. ranked highly (No. 4) in both HR (a combination of education and health) and Technology, thanks to 90 percent of adults having a high school diploma and the low unemployment rate; and academic R&D and NIH support, respectively. D.C. settled for the No. 2 spot in government and fiscal policy right behind Nashville, which Haughton attributes to Tennessee's low tax rate.
Detroit, New Orleans and Riverside, Calif. rounded out the bottom 50. Haughton doesn't predict D.C.'s score to improve in 2008.
"I suspect housing costs in the D.C. area are falling less than many parts of the county are, so D.C. will look relatively worse next year," he said.