Charleston tops Greenville, Columbia on Forbes list
Published July 1, 2011
Charleston was the highest-ranking S.C. metropolitan area on Forbes magazine’s annual list of the Best Places for Business and Careers, released Wednesday.
The Greenville MSA came in at No. 60, with the Columbia MSA No. 73. The Charleston MSA is ranked No. 40. (Click on each city to read more about Forbes’ ranking.)
Raleigh, N.C., ranked No. 1, and the top 25 had a high concentration of cities in Western states, excluding California. View the full list here.
“In most of these hot hubs, you’ll find a strong university or two, providing rich cultural life and the kind of technology transfer that sparks entrepreneurial activity — giving that educated population lots of reasons to stick around,” according to the story.
To compile the list, Forbes evaluates 12 metrics, including past and projected job growth, costs of living and doing business, income growth, educational attainment and projected economic growth. The magazine also factors in quality of life issues such as crime rates, cultural and recreational opportunities and net migration patterns. Forbes looks at the nation’s 200 largest metropolitan statistical areas.
Projected annual job growth is 2.4% for the Charleston MSA, which includes North Charleston and Summerville, Forbes said. In ranking the area, Forbes cited the Holy City’s strong tourism industry and cluster of universities.
The Greenville MSA, which includes Easley and Mauldin, has a projected annual job growth rate of 2%, Forbes said. In its profile of Greenville, the magazine cited cultural events like Euphoria and Artisphere, as well as well-known business names like Lockheed Martin, 3M and Honeywell that have operations in the region.
The Columbia MSA has projected annual job growth of 1.8%, Forbes said. The magazine cited the city’s military installations; colleges and universities; parks; and events, both cultural and political.
Other nearby Southeastern cities on the list include Charlotte, No 22; Asheville, N.C., No. 24; Durham, N.C., No. 31; and Atlanta, No. 33.