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he strength and vitality of Tuscaloosa County can be felt in the healthy pulse of our business, industrial and professional community, and in a progressive business climate that has attracted national and international attention and investment. Diversity of our economy is a key ingredient in the recipe for success in Tuscaloosa County which is enhanced by a strong work ethic and high productivity.

Mercedes-BenzWith innovative, public-private partnerships in place, Tuscaloosa County has emerged as one of Alabama's strongest economies over the past decade and one of the South's economic leaders. From homegrown businesses and local entrepreneurs to the global marketplace, Tuscaloosa County is built on and around abundant natural resources; a stable, diverse economic base; and people who possess a combination of old-fashioned work ethics and energetic, optimistic spirits.

These vital elements combine to foster an economic formula that works creating an environment for prosperous local enterprises, entrepreneurial initiatives, and linkages to the global market. Simply stated, Tuscaloosa County is an ideal home for business.

ECONOMIC PROFILE

JVCA diverse economy, Tuscaloosa County is home to a broad array of major businesses, industries, education and health care. With consistently one of Alabama's lowest unemployment rates and one of the South's most stable economies, Tuscaloosa County proudly boasts a balanced economic base.

Twenty-three percent of the workplace is employed by government, which includes major health care and education related employment; twenty-four percent in retail and wholesale trade; sixteen percent in manufacturing; twenty-two percent in services; and balance of the workforce spread among construction, transportation, finance, insurance, real estate and public services.

Cornerstones of Tuscaloosa County's economy include The University of Alabama, (click here for the lastest University of Alabma Economic Impact Study)one of the nation's most outstanding research universities, with more than 19,000 students; and major health care centers, including DCH Regional Medical Center, Alabama's third largest hospital, Northport Hospital-DCH, Bryce Hospital, Partlow Development Center, Veterans Administration Medical Center.

An array of international manufacturing facilities balance the area's economy. In today's global economy, Tuscaloosa County has emerged as an international player and continues to attract investment from quality corporate and industrial leaders, and we sell our products worldwide.

Tuscaloosa County is home to an exceptional cadre of quality manufacturers that read like a who's who of industry, and that include: Mercedes-Benz U.S. International, Uniroyal Goodrich Tire Manufacturing (Michelin), JVC America, Hunt Refining, Corus Tuscaloosa (British Steel), Phifer Wire Products, Gulf States Paper Corporation, Johnson Controls, Delphi Harrison, Delphi Packard, and a host of other nationally-known industrial firms.

FINANCIAL

The community's financial industry continues to be a strong, integral component of Tuscaloosa County's economy and provides a competitive and varied base base of financial services and opportunities. 13 major banks, with over $1.7 billion in deposits; 12 credit unions, and other financial services provide an exceptional base for meeting the needs of an expanding economy and growing community.

SMALL BUSINESS

As a major generator of jobs and economic activity, the entrepreneurs and small businesses of Tuscaloosa County are at the heart of the area's success and economic vitality. Small business enterprises of every type, shape and form dot the landscape.

Family-owned, home-grown professional firms, franchises…..old fashioned, service-oriented businesses……Tuscaloosa County has become an outstanding investment opportunity for small business development, startups and technology transfer. The Tuscaloosa-Birmingham corridor consistently ranks in the top twenty markets in the nation for entrepreneurial success.

In addition, a myriad of support services and resources are available to small businesses, entrepreneurs and existing firms. The innovative Business Resource Center at The Chamber of Commerce of West Alabama provides a wide array of services and assistance programs along with The Chamber's ongoing programs and networks for business development.

Along with support from the Tuscaloosa County Industrial Development Authority, The Chamber provides services to assist with strategic planning, technology development, training, site assistance, marketing and other business-related initiatives.

Among other business partners in the community's varied development network that are available for assistance include: Alabama International Trade Center; Small Business Development Center; Small Business and Family Business Institutes, and the Center For Economic and Business Research, all at The University of Alabama; Entrepreneurial Development Center at Shelton State Community College; Stillman College's Disadvantaged Enterprise Program; and the Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE) at The Chamber.

TOURISM AND CONVENTIONS

Again, the diversity and strength of Tuscaloosa County's economy can be seen in the growing hospitality sector. With over 2,400 quality rooms, Tuscaloosa's lodging facilities continue to grow along with the expansion of new locally-owned restaurants as well as regional chains.

The hospitality industry is comprised of tourism, conventions and conferences, major athletic events and festivals, all of which have combined to create an exciting environment for not only local residents, but also for a growing number of visitors to the area. Hotel occupancy rates are consistently above state averages; and Tuscaloosa continues to be a favorite site for state and regional conventions and conferences.

The Tuscaloosa Convention and Visitors Bureau, housed in the historic Jemison House, provides management and support services for conventions and tourism activities. According to the bureau, the visitors industry had an annual economic impact of over $ 240 million for the Tuscaloosa area in 2000.

CONSTRUCTION

Tuscaloosa's County's growth and strong economy is evidenced in the construction market. Recently during a ten month period over 271 million dollars in new construction took place in Tuscaloosa, with almost 16 million dollars in construction estimated in Northport.

ECONOMIC ADVANTAGES

A key to Tuscaloosa County's economic success is its natural resources. There are natural advantages of a moderate climate, fertile soil, rich forests, abundant water, energy and mineral resources. Energy resources are reliable and costs are low and competitive.

A prosperous community, Tuscaloosa County's per capita personal income is $ with a median family income of $42,000

Diverse, innovative, aggressive. These descriptions coupled with a growing connection to the global market place and a positive entrepreneurial spirit, frame the portrait of Tuscaloosa County's economy

From successful home-grown businesses to our newest international investments….. from manufacturing to retail to small service-oriented businesses…..from health care to tourism to education……Tuscaloosa County is building a vibrant, 21st century economy. And it's built on a tradition of quality and a belief that Tuscaloosa County is the idea home for business.

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