County Seat: Panama City
Foundation Year: 1,913
Total Square Miles: 758
2018 Population: 185,287
People/Square Mile: 244
2018 Population: 185,287
Population 25 to 64 years old: 53.58%
Population 65 years and older: 17.10%
Gross Domestic Product (GDP): $7.6 B
Unemployment rate: 4.00%
CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
Bay County is located on the Gulf of Mexico coast, centrally located in northwestern Florida between Pensacola and Tallahassee. With more than 27 miles of coastline, Bay County is shaping up to be Florida's next economic engine. The area enjoys competitive advantages in activities related to aerospace development, technology, manufacturing, logistics, trade and, of course, tourism development. The main reasons to consider Bay County as a great place to live and invest are the following:
- A consensual attitude of support for growth
Both local elected leaders and those in the private sector enthusiastically support the region's growth policies. State, county and city leaders have committed significant public resources to building the infrastructure necessary to foster projected growth and ensure that businesses can operate in a smooth business environment. With this positive attitude, it has been possible to build a new international airport, the capacity of the port has been expanded, quality education centers have been achieved, a trained workforce and a first-class road and highway system have been consolidated. In short, the county has local leadership aligned with the common goal of making the region more competitive for quality growth projects, and helping each locality reach its economic potential.
- Connectivity with the world
The county has a modern international airport, a vibrant port that connects the region to the world, and north-south rail connectivity to the CSX railway. Taken together, this connectivity creates a strategic position for Bay County that provides a strong distribution network for the movement of goods and people in and out of the area.
- It enjoys the influence of several military bases.
Bay County has been home to the Air Force, Navy, and Coast Guard since the 1930s and 1940s. Military bases have contributed to the formation of a conglomerate of defense and aerospace companies throughout the region.
- Skilled labor.
One of the main factors for attracting investment to the region is the existence of qualified labor. Bay County has a workforce of over 100.000 people. The five area colleges and universities provide a strong student base for the workforce. Many people leaving the military choose to remain in the field, providing the market with well-trained, innovative engineers, scientists, and researchers ready to enter the civilian workforce.
- Industrial and commercial infrastructure available.
In Bay County, there is a good availability of industrial and commercial conglomerates, ready for occupancy. The county offers a profitable alternative to other competitive high-tech areas. Simply put, land, labor, and capital are more affordable in Florida than they are in California, New York, or Texas.
- Exceptional quality of life
Sun, sand, symphony, great schools and an entrepreneurial spirit. Combined, they underscore the exceptional quality of life enjoyed throughout the Bay Area. Studies show that a good quality of life attracts excellent workers. Every region is looking for a competitive advantage and when you can combine a great place to live with a diverse and emerging economy, you attract and keep the best and brightest workers. From boating to Broadway shows, deep-sea fishing and bird watching, world-class golf and prestigious schools, there are plenty of events in Bay County to please the most varied tastes.
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