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Lehigh Valley ranked in top 10 for fifth straight year

By LVEDC Staff on March 5, 2013

Site Selection, one of the most highly-read national magazines that covers corporate real estate and economic development, has recognized the Lehigh Valley among the top performing regions in its prestigious Governor’s Cup Awards rankings for 2012.

This marks the fifth consecutive year the Lehigh Valley has been ranked in the top 10.

Above, a photo of downtown Easton. “This recognition is particularly important because it’s coming from one of the top read publications in the country for people making economic development decisions,” noted LVEDC President and CEO Don Cunningham.

The Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton metro area earned the national ninth ranking overall with populations between 200,000 and one million people throughout the nation. A total of 24 new and expanded corporate facility projects were completed in the Lehigh Valley last year. Our top-10 finish helped Pennsylvania rank third nationally.

The Dayton, Ohio metro area captured the first-place position with 53 projects.

“The Lehigh Valley has consistently been recognized as one of the top ten regions of its size in the United States for economic growth and development,” said Don Cunningham, president & CEO of the Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corp. “This recognition is particularly important because it’s coming from one of the top read publications in the country for people making economic development decisions. The ranking is a testament to the hard-work and cooperation of our public and private-sector leaders who make economic development a priority by investing in infrastructure, improving the region’s quality of life and helping to provide a quality workforce. It’s that regional cooperation that makes the Lehigh Valley a national success story.”

To qualify for Site Selection’s Award, the new facilities and expansions must have at least $1 million in new investment or re-investment, 20,000 or more square feet of new construction or they must create at least 50 new jobs. The projects cannot be government, educational, retail or residential construction.

During 2012 LVEDC helped to attract eight new companies to the region last year including Westport Axle, Quality Packaging Systems International, Ocean Spray, Pratt Industries and Ice River Springs.

In addition, in December 2012 the Fourth Economy Community Index recognized Lehigh County as one of the top economic communities across the nation poised to attract modern investment and managed economic growth.

Ranked seventh in the “Large-Sized Counties” segment measuring populations between 150,000 and 499,999, Fourth Economy anointed the independent ranking to Lehigh County based on the following criteria: investment, talent, sustainability, place and diversity. Specific indicators include wage and employment growth, education levels, drive times, home values, minority business ownership, agricultural and manufacturing capacity and population density.

Published by Conway Data, Site Selection is the oldest publication in the corporate real estate and economic development field, and has been awarding its prestigious Governor’s Cup annually since 1978 to states and metropolitan areas with the most capital projects and investments. The magazine’s circulation base consists of 44,000 executives involved in corporate site selection decisions.

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