Check out these headlines and stories…..
Houston Ahead of Austin, Dallas for High-tech Jobs
A study by Forbes magazine places Houston ahead of Austin and Dallas-Fort Worth as a mecca for technology jobs. Houston ranked #18, compared to Austin (#32) and Dallas (#) 46 out of 51 metro areas studied. Austin, often thought as the most likely candidate for the next Silicon Valley, lost over 19 percent of its high-tech jobs over the past decade, including more than 17,000 jobs in semiconductor, computer and circuit board manufacturing.
Region #1 – Most Construction Jobs in the U.S.
The Houston-Sugar Land- Baytown area added the most metropolitan construction jobs in the past 12 months while 146 other major metro areas lost construction jobs, according to an Associated General Contractors of America report. The region gained 5,100 construction jobs, a three percent increase between October ‘10 and October ‘11
Galleria Sees First Office Development in Decades
After nearly 30 years with no office development, the Galleria is suddenly a flurry of construction. Two office tower projects are currently in the ground: Skanska’s 300,000 sq. ft., 19-story office tower at 3009 Post Oak and another 312,000 sq. ft. tower is under construction at 2200 Post Oak of which 150,000 sq. ft. will be occupied by BBVA upon completion.
West University #1 – Best Suburb in the South
Houston’s West University Place (population 15,360) tops a quality of life study of cities, towns and suburbs in the Southern United States (13 states). Educational background, proximity to Rice University and 85 percent of adults holding bachelor’s degrees were among the key reasons why it topped the list, based on The Business Journals’ On Numbers data analysis
High-end Retail Thriving in Houston
Big-box retail chains have been downsizing nationally but a number of luxury retailers in Houston are getting larger. Examples of new luxury retailers include: Omega, Hugo Boss and London-based L.K. Bennett, Miu Miu and South Africa-based De Beers have all recently picked Houston for new stores, expansions, and product line debuts.
Houston #2 – Highest Hotel Occupancy Gains in U.S.
Houston’s hotels ranked second in the nation for achieving the highest year-over-year gain in room demand, according to Smith Travel Research, which reported the city’s inns logged a 10.5 percent hike in demand from January through October. That’s a little more than double the U.S. average of 5.1 percent.
Region’s Unemployment Rate Continues to Drop
The Houston region’s unemployment rate has fallen from 8.1 percent in October to 7.6 percent in November. The jobless rate has been steadily declining since November ‘10, according to the Texas Workforce Commission. For the past 19 months, Texas has seen annual job growth, especially in trade, transportation and utilities, which added 59,600 jobs this year. The manufacturing industry saw its highest annual growth rate since October ’06.