Author Topic: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees  (Read 10058 times)

Metro Jacksonville

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America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« on: November 05, 2013, 03:05:27 AM »
America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees



America's 100 largest downtowns ranked by number of employees. Find out if and where Jacksonville makes the list.

Full Article
http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2013-nov-americas-downtowns-ranked-by-number-of-employees

Keith-N-Jax

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Re: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2013, 03:59:47 AM »
Surprised to see Miami ahead of Atlanta.

simms3

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Re: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« Reply #2 on: November 05, 2013, 04:16:26 AM »
^^^It should be noted that the same report actually places DT Jax at 38,000 employees, which falls in line with what we have been saying here, but doesn't seem to jive with lots of the other small downtowns in the country that are estimated as having larger employment numbers, but are clearly smaller.  The 56,000 number comes from the secondary employment center named "JAcksonville Medical Center", which I think we can infer means the Southbank, and the Northbank is close enough where its employment numbers would be counted...as well as Riverside.

It should also be noted that usually state capitals (especially in the small-mid size) are way overcounted for various reasons.  Same goes for towns with universities right in their center (Austin comes to mind).

It should also be noted that Boston isn't even counted because statistics aren't officially kept in MA.

It should finally be noted that there are secondary employment centers such as Koreatown/Wilshire in LA, Brooklyn (admittedly over-counted due to the nature of the functions that downtown serves), Las Vegas Strip, Irvine CA, and others that are massively large and in the top 20 of all employment centers in the country.

Also, want to point out that DC is the "4th largest DT" in America with 468K workers, AND 50.5% of residents within 1 mile of the outer edge of downtown also work downtown (very high %), AND a whopping 173K residents lives within its CBD's loose borders (higher than notably dense cities like SF despite water taking up half of the area, Lower Manhattan despite water taking up half its area, DT Chicago despite water taking up half its area, and Center City Philadelphia), .  This is all patently misleading because when you look at employment density it falls wayyy short (97 employees per acre, behind all of the majors, several secondary centers, and places like Cincinnati and St. Paul MN).  Basically DC is a mega sprawling downtown no thanks to its height limits.

We can deduct that with 468K employees at an average of 97 employees/acre, that its CBD sprawls 7.5 square miles.  Add 1 mile out from its borders and you get 22.45 sq miles.  173K people live within these 22.45 sq miles, or 7,704ppsm, which is less than the DC average of 10,300 ppsm.

Contrast Jacksonville's 56,000 employees at avg density of 44 jobs/acre (I used the higher Jax Medical Center figures as opposed to DT Jax figures), and you're at 2 sq mi.  Add 1 mile to each side and you're at 16 sq mi.  25,000 people live within this area (I used the higher "downtown Jax" figures rather than the "Jax Medical Center" figures), which of course includes a good bit of water.  1,563 ppsm around downtown.  Not a good sign - need to build that up to a "uniform" 3-4,000ppsm across all 16 sq miles.

BTW, none of the FL downtowns have a "dense" downtown when it comes to employment.  The most dense is Tampa at 87 jobs/acre and at only 1.5 sq mi is actually one of the smaller downtowns.  It sustains a moderate employment density over a small area.  Miami has 188,000 DT employees, but spread all over between DT, Brickell, and other submarkets that are half-heartedly connected, such that its employment density is only 52 jobs/acre and its downtown is a whopping 5.65 sq mi, one of the largest in the country.  Yet it packs residential punch with 141,000 residents within 1 mile of this large downtown area (and considering water takes up lots of this are).  Its downtown still feels quiet and dead to me because the residents are often part-time, the buildings are gated, and there isn't much of a concentrated employment base as compared to other downtowns.

Jax would do wise to not just focus on residential and tourism, but also office employment growth downtown.  Relatively speaking compared to other parts of town, Lower Manhattan, SF's Financial District, Chicago's Loop, and Boston's financial district all shut down.  But they are still ZOOMING at least 15 hours a day.  5:30 AM til about 8:30 PM where I live, all driven by office (4th most dense downtown behind the 2 New Yorks and Chicago, and I don't even believe LA's #s for a second knowing that market a fair bit).
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simms3

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Re: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« Reply #3 on: November 05, 2013, 04:39:23 AM »
Surprised to see Miami ahead of Atlanta.

Atlanta has Midtown and Downtown broken up.

DT Atl = 143,000 employees,
MT Atl = 104,000 employees
Total = 247,000 employees
Miami = 188,000 employees

DT Atl = 88 employees per acre
MT Atl = 33 employees per acre
Blended = 51.7 employees per acre
Estimated employment area = 7.46 sq mi (33,110 employees per sq mi)

Miami = 52 employees per acre
Estimated employment area = 5.65 sq mi (33,274 employees per sq mi)


All in all, Miami and Atlanta have a similar employment density, but Atlanta when it comes to sheer office space and employment is considerably larger than Miami.  It also has a larger, denser core (Downtown).

For office space comparison (looking at multi-tenant and/or for lease space, not owner/occupied), the Miami CBD, including DT, Brickell, and Biscayne corridor has about 22.6 million RSF, of which about 17.6% is vacant and about 46% is Class A.

MT Atl has about 24 million SF and DT has about 36 million SF for combined 60 million RSF (Buckhead has 22 million SF for comparison).  15.2% is currently vacant and 55% is Class A.

Contrast with SF, which has 73 million SF in an area less than 30% the size of Atlanta's CBD area.

For reference:

Northbank has about 12 million SF
Southbank has about 3 million SF
Riverside has about 3 million SF
San Marco has about 2 million SF

Total core of Jax has about 20 million SF of office space spread over a rather large area probably about the size larger than the core of Atlanta.  It needs to tighten up and densify employment if it wants to "feel" active.

edit: just looked and Riverside and San Marco take up huge areas, so for backup the largest 25 buildings take up about 9.4 million SF.  I'm sure the DT area is closer to 15 million SF tops.
« Last Edit: November 05, 2013, 04:47:34 AM by simms3 »
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I-10east

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Re: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« Reply #4 on: November 05, 2013, 04:54:14 AM »
I was surprised to see Sac-Town so high.

Noone

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Re: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« Reply #5 on: November 05, 2013, 05:20:14 AM »
simms3 great info and insight.
When you talk about the density has anyone factored the HUGE redo of the Martin Luther King parkway? I know it's just outside of the area that you are describing but you talk about the wiping out of businesses and building stock. Would like to hear the positives or negatives that this displacement is having.

Keith-N-Jax

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Re: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« Reply #6 on: November 05, 2013, 05:37:47 AM »
Thanks, I lived in ATL for a while so I knew something was up that had Miami ahead of Atlanta. Would be interesting to see Jax with South Point added although I know its not DT.

thelakelander

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Re: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« Reply #7 on: November 05, 2013, 08:10:40 AM »
^It does when you include Brooklyn and the Southbank.  Over the years, downtown's boundaries have been redefined and enlarged to include these areas.
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Keith-N-Jax

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Re: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« Reply #8 on: November 05, 2013, 08:36:57 AM »
Not sure why that needed to be redefined, personally I have always seen these areas part of DT

jcjohnpaint

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Re: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« Reply #9 on: November 05, 2013, 09:02:08 AM »
Thanks Sims.  Great insight. 
"Total core of Jax has about 20 million SF of office space spread over a rather large area probably about the size larger than the core of Atlanta.  It needs to tighten up and densify employment if it wants to "feel" active."
Great point!

TPC

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Re: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« Reply #10 on: November 05, 2013, 11:06:47 AM »
Take that, Downtown Albany!

Tacachale

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Re: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« Reply #11 on: November 05, 2013, 12:32:36 PM »
I think most cities define their downtown somewhat differently, and that probably accounts for the widely varying accounts.

In Jacksonville we actually have several definitions in common use. For most people, "Downtown" means the core area, including only the Northbank east of Hogans Creek, south of about Union/State, and west of Lavilla (or possibly including Lavilla). However, the "Central Business District" is often considered equivalent to Downtown. This comprises a wider area, including the Southbank (approximately north of 95), the Stadium District out to the riverfront docks, and Lavilla and Brooklyn. This includes area beyond what many people would consider the true "downtown", but it has more of an official position. You also regularly hear people who work in Brooklyn or the Southbank say "I work Downtown". Within the CBD I'd wager there really are 38k workers, as it includes those areas.
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ChriswUfGator

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Re: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« Reply #12 on: November 05, 2013, 12:36:11 PM »
Downtown doesn't have 56,000 workers, and doesn't have 38,000 either. The actual figure is more like 8,000.


PeeJayEss

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Re: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« Reply #13 on: November 05, 2013, 01:23:32 PM »
The best part about this list is that it gives a better idea of who our true peer cities are when we are comparing notes.

thelakelander

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Re: America's Downtowns Ranked by Number of Employees
« Reply #14 on: November 05, 2013, 01:26:13 PM »
Take that, Downtown Albany!

Don't worry, we're on their tail.  By 2020, we'll have a BRT system just like them. It would be cool to see if they've had any TOD as a result of their investment....


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