Supporting a population of nearly 200,000 and serving as a major hub for many outlying communities, Amarillo is one of the Texas Panhandle’s most successful cities. The city offers central access to major U.S. markets via two rail lines, no personal, state or corporate income tax, a highly skilled workforce, and a cost of living that’s well below the rest of Texas and the country. According to POLICOM Corporation’s 2016 Economic Strength Rankings, Amarillo is one of the top 100 nationally ranked MSAs and #10 in the state of Texas.
A recent report prepared by The Perryman Group, an independent research firm, estimated a 2013-2018 expansion in real gross product in Amarillo of 4.14% per year, resulting in an increase of almost $2.13 billion by 2018. Additionally, nearly 13,000 jobs are likely to be added over that period.
Beyond the famed Route 66, Amarillo is conveniently connected to the region and country via rail, airports and highways. The central position and access to a multitude of transportation options make it ideally suited for distribution operations. National companies such as Ben E. Keith, Affiliated Foods, Inc., and AmeriCold have built successful operations in Amarillo. The locational benefits are enhanced by the Foreign Trade Zone status which helps local companies import/export more expediently and at a reduced expense.
Amarillo’s long-established transportation infrastructure and ample land have historically enabled a range of logistics and agriculture industries. With each passing year, however, more companies are recognizing the other assets of Amarillo, including an exceptional talent pool and renewable energy infrastructure. Over the past 5 years, industries have started to shift toward more high-tech endeavors. Prime examples of this include alternative energy producers and aviation companies Gestamp Renewable Industries, Bell Helicopter, TACAir and Leading Edge Aviation Services. As a result, household incomes from these high-paying jobs are reflecting a strong local economy. Median household incomes are 16% higher than the nation, and 12% higher than Texas.
In addition to being a highly desired site for business, Amarillo boasts a number of cultural attractions and events. The Globe-News Center for the Performing Arts opened in 2006, and houses a 1,300-seat auditorium for the Amarillo Opera, Amarillo Symphony and Lone Star Ballet. The adjacent 340,000-squarefoot Amarillo Civic Center contains a variety of multipurpose areas including a 4,870 fixed seat coliseum and an auditorium with 2,324 seats. Two exhibit halls, two ballrooms, and meeting rooms are designed to meet a wide variety of needs including business meetings, banquets, dances, conventions, and trade shows.