Job growth in the tech industry is strong all over the United States, but the top three cities for tech job growth, according to recently-published data from late 2011, are Cleveland, Ohio, Detroit, Mich., and, back in Ohio, Cincinnati. All three cities have their highlights, some more than others, so anyone considering a move may want to explore a bit before deciding where to go.
Cincinnati, Ohio: the Queen City
The current explosion of tech jobs in Cincinnati isn’t the first boom the Queen City has experienced. Located in southwestern Ohio in Hamilton County and nestled at the lower tip of the Ohio River Valley, Cincinnati grew from a mere village at the start of the 1800s to a city of more than 100,000 by 1850 following the opening of the Miami and Erie Canal connecting the Ohio River and Lake Erie. Today the city is home to nearly 300,000 residents, and some two and half million people live and work in the greater metropolitan area.
Cincinnati is a sports-lover’s paradise. It’s best known teams are the Cincinnati Reds Major League Baseball team, a perennial post-season team to beat, and the Bengals National Football League team, a two-time Super Bowl contender. Cincinnati also features a professional hockey team, the Cyclones, is home to two soccer teams named the Kings in indoor and outdoor varieties, and the Commandos, an indoor football team.
The city enjoys a mild climate, with some snow in the winter months and relatively mild summers. Cincinnati residents love music and food, and each year they play host to the country’s largest Oktoberfest and one of the US’s largest outdoor festivals, Taste of Cincinnati USA, a food and music event held each Memorial Day that includes dozens of top jazz acts.
Cincinnati is home to Cincinnati Bell Technology Solutions and IBM, and is experiencing a 65 percent growth in tech jobs.
Detroit, Mich.: Motown
Despite some rough years recently, Detroit remains a vibrant city that has seen much growth recently. Famous for more than a century as the Motor City, Detroit remains a center of the domestic automobile industry and is the corporate headquarters for General Motors, Chrysler and Ford. And while the city proper lost nearly a quarter of its population during the first decade of this century, the metropolitan area around Detroit remains home to more than five million people or about half of Michigan’s entire population.
A center for music since the 1940s and famous for the Motown sound, Detroit remains true to its rock ‘n’ roll roots. Home to a long line of musicians, including acts such as Eminem, Insane Clown Posse, Alice Cooper and the entire Motown Records stable of performers like Stevie Wonder, the Temptations and Gladys Knight and Pips, Detroit continues the tradition into the 21st century with a slew of new music and entertainment venues at its three casino resort hotels, it’s revitalized waterfront district and its new stadiums.
Detroit’s stadiums are also host to world-class sports teams, including MLB’s Detroit Tigers and the Detroit Lions of the NFL. The city sits on both the Canadian border and the shore of Lake Huron, so it enjoys mild summers and snowy winters with temperatures that can drop well below freezing.
Detroit is home to Computer Sciences and General Electric, and has seen a 66 percent growth in tech jobs.
Cleveland, Ohio: The Rock ‘n’ Roll Capital of the World
Ohio’s most populous city with nearly 400,000 people living within its limits and more than 2,225,000 in the greater metropolitan area, Cleveland lies on the edge of Lake Erie’s southern shore near the state’s northeastern corner. A center of commerce and trading since the late 1700s, Cleveland is known for its architecture, parks and gardens.
A center of Midwestern tourism, Cleveland is home to museums and attractions, including the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the house used as the setting for the popular holiday film A Christmas Story. Cleveland is home to MLB’s Cleveland Indians, the NFL’s Cleveland Browns and the National Basketball Association’s Cleveland Cavaliers, as well as hockey and arena football teams.
Cleveland is known for its snowy winters, but it is also home to mild summers that rarely reach beyond average temperatures in the low 80s.
Cleveland enjoys a 107 percent growth rate in tech jobs.
All three of these cities offer lively entertainment scenes and livelier tech sector job markets for those considering making a move to where employment is plentiful. Each of them will be important locations for the tech industry in the coming decades if current trends continue.