The Heart of the Empire State: Albany, New York
Albany is the capital of New York State with a population of approximately 97,856 according to the 2010 census. Albany’s neighboring cities of Troy, Schenectady, and Saratoga Springs, make up the Capital District region. The main part of this area is made up of the Albany-Schenectady-Troy Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). The area’s 2010 population was 870,716, the 4th largest MSA in New York and the 58th largest in the country.
The population of Albany and the Capital District mirrors the characteristics of the United States consumer population as a whole better than any other major municipality in the country and has been a top-ranked standard test market for new business and retail products.
Albany has been a center of higher education for over a century, with much of the remainder of its economy dependent on state government and health care services. More than 25 percent of the city’s population works in government-related positions.
A growing fourth sector of the Albany market base is the emerging high-tech industry in and around Albany. The city is at the center of a 19-county region in eastern New York self-branded as “Tech Valley.” Albany is increasingly seen as a leader in nanotechnology, with the University at Albany’s College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering being respected as a national leader in the field. In 2009, chipmaker GlobalFoundries broke ground on a $4.6 billion chip manufacturing complex in nearby Malta and has been growing ever since. In 2010, Forbes ranked Albany fifteenth on its “Most Innovative Metros” list. In late 2010, the Capital District was noted for being “one of the fastest growing areas in the country for technology jobs.”
In 2009, the Albany market and its surrounding areas were listed number 30 in the nation on Forbes Magazine’s “Best Bang-For-The-Buck” list, a study that looked at the stability of the housing and job markets, cost of living, and commute times. In 2012 the Albany-Schenectady area was listed 4th on Forbes Magazine’s annual “Best Cities for Jobs” list.