“Bend continues to provide the ingredients that not only attracts new investment and businesses, but thinks beyond the first year with an ecosystem that supports growth, job generation and livability,” said Katy Brooks, Bend Chamber of Commerce CEO. “The level of sophistication and support within Bend far outweighs our market size and is due to the efforts of organizations that support the full life cycle of business and workforce development.”
For the second year in a row the Bend-Redmond metro area was listed as the Best Performing Small City in the US by the Milken Institute’s annual ranking of municipalities and metro areas.
In justifying Bend’s continued #1 ranking, the full report notes:
The Bend-Redmond, OR, area remains the top performing small region, held aloft by the second highest job growth among its peers for both 2016 and the five-year period 2011-2016. The region has a high quality of life and easy access to outdoor recreation, drawing in tourists and new residents alike. Demand from these new residents has been contributing to higher housing prices, and the precipitous fall in values experienced during the recession has been more than made up. The presence of the Oregon State University-Cascades campus is helping to create a skilled local workforce, valuable to the diverse local high-tech industry. The collaborative business community tries to foster an entrepreneurial environment and has developed solid support structures for new firms and startups in pursuit of broad-based growth.
Evidence of Central Oregon’s rebound from the depths of the Great Recession shows up throughout the Bend-Redmond’s rankings in the review of over 200 cities, notably in local job and wage growth. Rounding out the top three cities were St. George, Utah and Gainesville, Georgia, respectively.