POSTED: Friday, August 23, 2013 - 5:00am
UPDATED: Friday, August 23, 2013 - 5:04am
LAFAYETTE, La — Lafayette has topped Area Development’s list of best mid-sized cities and best Southern citiesfor economic and job growth.
Overall, Lafayette ranked third among the 365 metropolitan statistical areas surveyed in the 100 Leading Locations list.
The rankings are based on data for 23 indicators from the Bureau of Labor Statistics,the Bureau of Economic Analysis, and the U.S. Census American Community Survey.
The magazine also calculated rankings for three specific categories: Economic Strength, Prime Work Force and Recession-Busting Cities.
Lafayette topped the mid-sized city list and the overall list for Economic Strength which looked at workforce and labor factors including per capita real GDP, goods-producing employment, and employment growth. Lafayette ranked third for Recession-Busting mid-sized cities (13th overall) and ranked in the top 25 for Prime Workforce in mid-sized cities.
“Lafayette has seen significant economic growth in recent years and this recognition from Area Development reflects that,” says Gregg Gothreaux, President and CEO of the Lafayette Economic Development Authority. “Local economic indicators have rebounded and, in many cases, exceeded prerecession levels. With growing retail sales numbers, shrinking unemployment and a growing workforce, all signs point to the fact that over the next decade Lafayette will continue to be one of the premier cities in the South and other communities will strive to emulate our successes.”
The magazine noted many of Lafayette’s recent accolades including Forbes’ best cities for jobs ranking, Sentier Research’s fastest income growth ranking, and the local unemployment rate which was the lowest in state at 4.9 percent in May.