The Department of Economic Development (DED) is introducing a new monthly feature: Frederick Facts. Frederick Facts will highlight interesting statistics and data points unique to Frederick's business community. This feature will cover a wide range of industries and topics, including retail, office, tourism, and more. A compilation of all Frederick Facts will reside on the DED blog.
By Bobby Baumler
The number of minority-owned businesses in Frederick continue to grow and follow many national trends. According to the Minority Business Development Agency, the formation of minority-owned businesses continues to significantly outpace the formation of non minority-owned businesses. From 2007-2012, the number of minority-owned businesses increased 39% according to the Census Bureau.
The office market continues to improve in Downtown Frederick. Over the last year, the vacancy rate has fallen from 9.0% to 7.8%, according to CoStar. This has resulted in over 24,000 square feet of absorption as new technology and professional companies locate to Downtown Frederick.
As Hood College students return to class this week, we are reminded that Frederick is well-positioned to retain future graduates. A survey of Hood students indicated at 60% of students "agreed" or "strongly agreed" that they would choose to live in The City of Frederick following graduation. Students interested in staying in Frederick can feel confident in their decision as GoodCall recently named Frederick as one of the 2017 Best Cities for New Grads (#43). The rankings considered factors including amenities, median salary, increased salary potential, and the availability of jobs.
The bioscience industry employs over 2,700 people in Frederick County and created nearly 250 new jobs in 2015 according to Frederick County Workforce Services. The Department of Economic Development (DED) remains committed to supporting this industry as the biosciences afford family-supporting wages and career growth. Most recently, DED entered into a new partnership with BioBuzz Workforce Foundation Inc. to provide Frederick bioscience companies and their employees collaboration opportunities through the BioHive platform.
According to ESRI,Frederick households spend over $3,500 a year on food purchases made outside of the home, including restaurants. Much of this spending is anticipated to occur during the holiday season with special occasions, including family gatherings and holiday parties. According to data from the National Retail Federation, over 17% of annual sales at food and beverage stores occurs during the holiday sales season.
According to ESRI, the City of Frederick is home to nearly 100 manufacturers. This targeted industry for the City employs almost 2,000 individuals. As we celebrate Maryland Manufacturing Month, we are reminded that manufacturers provide family-supporting wages and career opportunities for the Frederick community. According to the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MED), the annual average salary of a manufacturing worker in the United States is more than $77,000 a year.
Frederick County Public Schools recently released its Educational Partnerships report for the 2015-2016 school year. The report recognizes the more than 1,200 businesses and organizations that partner with the school system annually. Many of the City's largest employers provided funding and staff resources to support public education in Frederick County.
As Fredericktonians prepare for the start of a new school year, back to school shopping is a part of the tradition. According to the National Retail Federation, spending for the 2016 back to school season will reach nearly $76 billion, including spending for both K-12 and college students. This equates to K-12 families spending approximately $675 on their children and college families spending approximately $890. The same survey evaluated where shoppers plan to visit. The research indicated that over 60% of consumers plan to shop at a discount store, nearly 60% plan to shop at a department store, and nearly 40% plan to shop at an office supply store. With over 700 retailers located within The City of Frederick, residents will not need to travel far to check off each item on their back to school shopping list.
Frederick's residential population continues to grow at a time when many small towns are experiencing a contraction in population. Today, the City is home to over 68,000 residents and this number is expected to grow at a rate of over 4% per year through 2020.
|Frederick's millennials account for 24% of the City's resident population. Over 40% of millennials in Frederick hold at least a bachelor's degree and over 65% hold professional jobs.|
The Frederick retail market analysis compared Frederick's spending on Food purchases by category. Citywide, Frederick consumers spend more than the national average in every category, most notably spending 17% higher than the national average on alcoholic beverages and 10% more than average on overall food purchases.
The Golden Mile is Frederick's original retail corridor and is currently home to over 1.6 million square feet of retail space. Following the completion of the Golden Mile Gateway and Frederick Towne Center projects, the total retail along the Golden Mile will exceed 2.3 million square feet, or nearly half of the total retail space within The City of Frederick.