According to The Milken Institute, a nonpartisan, nonprofit think tank in Santa Monica, Calif:
“College Station-Bryan, Texas, climbed 30 spots to finish in eighth place. Its strong performances in both short-term (seventh place) and long-term (eighth) job growth contributed to its improved overall ranking. Wages here also grew over 22 percent above the national average from 2007 to 2012, contributing to the metro’s 12th-place finish in long-term wage growth.
The metro has capitalized on its proximity to Barnett Shale, with mining and related support activities directly responsible for creating over 700 jobs during the last five years ending in 2013. Extraction in the area has had positive effects on a number of industries such as construction and other related services. Higher tax revenue stemming from oil and gas extraction has benefited the local economy and Texas A&M University, in particular.
Texas A&M is the metro’s biggest employer and primary economic driver. Its growing reputation as a research hub has helped attract business investment and support emerging industries. ConocoPhillips recently announced that it would donate $6 million to the university’s Dwight Look College of Engineering, allowing for the construction of the new Engineering Education Complex.
Further, the metro’s growing Biocorridor, dubbed the Research Valley, is becoming a regional center for medical research. A 100,000-square-foot national manufacturing facility for pandemic influenza vaccine, to be completed in early 2017, will serve as an anchor for the Texas A&M Biocorridor.
These projects not only will boost short-term construction employment but create opportunities for sustainable growth in the metro’s knowledge-based industries.”