Northwest Arkansas' Continual Growth

March 4, 2021

Economic Development

Northwest Arkansas' Continual Growth

NWA Daily (8th Street Market; Bentonville)

Northwest Arkansas now ranks as one of the most popular destinations for talent relocating to mid-size markets in the US. Mid-size markets (more affordable metro areas) are growing in attractiveness across the country, and the trend has greatly accelerated during the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • The desire for an alternative to major cities (such as LA, Chicago, and New York) is often attributed to the remote work shift, expensive housing markets, and densely populated metros.
  • In 2020, Arkansas ranked No. 10 among U.S. states for inbound movers, according to the National Migration Study. Furthermore, NWA is also one of the fastest growing metros in the country, ranking high for quality of life and low for cost of living.
  • The same study showed Arkansas experienced a 59% inbound percentage as part of a larger migration to the southern states, and jobs were the primary reason for individuals relocating to Arkansas.
  • Companies that also make the switch to mid-size markets experience growth rates up to 20%. According to AEDC, smaller metros provide the most optimal opportunities for companies seeking access to talent, and workforce availability is driving investment to alternative locations. -AEDC

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