Last year was a positive year for the City of Lynchburg’s economy. The City’s economic investments resulted in new opportunities for entrepreneurs and big businesses alike, a renewed Enterprise Zone, and several other notable accomplishments for Lynchburg, Virginia. To access the annual report, simply view the video above or take a look at the stats below.
In 2015, the City of Lynchburg’s Office of Economic Development invested in people and place to achieve the following goals:
- Attract more businesses of all sizes to Lynchburg
- Retain current businesses and find ways to help them grow
- Improve infrastructure, workforce strengths and human capital
- Find new ways to help entrepreneurs launch startups in Lynchburg
Economic Overview in Lynchburg FY 2016
Lynchburg is the third fastest-growing city in the Commonwealth. The population has continued to rise steadily by 5.6 percent since 2010 and 19 percent since 2000 (1). The City’s population growth reflects the number of new businesses. New Lynchburg startups have increased by 32.5 percent in just 3 years from 83 in 2013 to 123 in 2015 (2). In 2015, 3,598 business licenses were issued in the City of Lynchburg.
Despite the population growth, Lynchburg’s cost of living remains 7 percent lower than the national average, making it an affordable place to live, work and start a business. As of February 2016, that number had already risen to 3,651. Many Lynchburg businesses experience longevity and sustained growth compared to other cities in the United States. In fact, 10.9 percent more Lynchburg businesses renew their licenses for 10 or more years than the national average (3).
Last year, Lynchburg businesses leveraged $837,602 in Enterprise Zone Real Property Improvement Grants with more than $15.8 million in private commercial property investments, creating 52 jobs and retaining more than 550 jobs. The City’s unemployment rate dropped below 4.0 percent (4), more than $2 billion was sold city-wide in annual retail sales, and commercial building permits totaled nearly $77 million in real property investment (4).
1 2015 U.S. Census
2 Virginia Employment Commission
3 SBA, 2011
4 Virginia Employment Commission