A recent report by WalletHub shows that North Charleston and Charleston are experiencing some of the fastest economic growth in the country. The study analyzed 10 key metrics, including job growth, population and income for 515 cities.
The biggest challenges facing these two cities are infrastructure demands and home prices, a common issue for high growth areas. The Post and Courier recently published an in depth article highlighting the results of this study. The Post and Courier quoted Steven French, a professor of city and regional planning at Georgia Institute of Technology. He said that the WalletHub study highlights the biggest challenges facing cities experiencing rapid economic growth. This includes building “enough infrastructure—transportation, water and sewer systems—to keep up with the growing demand,” according to Professor French. “It is easy for rapidly growing cities to fall behind, resulting in traffic congestion, air and water pollution and seriously diminished health and quality of life for their citizens,” he added.
North Charleston and Charleston Rank High in Economic Growth Among 515 Cities Studied
Despite these issues, the WalletHub study reports that North Charleston scored 62.61 points out of a 100 and ranked number 23 out of all cities. It ranked number 10 among midsize cities with populations from 1000,000 to 300,000.
Charleston scored 60.2 points out of 100 and ranked 44th nationally and 23rd among midsize cities. The WalletHub study looked at economic trends between 2008 and 2014.
The WalletHub study showed that cities could earn up to 50 points for socio-demographic issues such as population growth, age of the workforce, and the growth or decrease in the poverty rate.
A city could score an additional 50 points for job growth and the strength of its local economy. The study analyzed data on median household income growth, decrease in the unemployment rate, increase in the number of jobs, and the ratio of full-time to part-time jobs in the local economy. The WalletHub study also looked at the growth of the regional gross domestic product per capita, the increase in the number of businesses, and growth of median house prices.
Other South Carolina Cities Show Strong Economic Growth
Other South Carolina cities included in the WalletHub report were Columbia with a ranking of 113 among the 515 cities analyzed, and a score of 54.55. Rock Hill ranked number 114 nationally, with a score of 54.24. Mount Pleasant ranked 133 nationally with a score of 53.45. Mount Pleasant also ranked number 40 among small cities with populations with less than 100,000.
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