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Boulder Economy Ranks No. 4 in Nation, Expected to Remain Resilient

A new report placed Boulder in fourth for economic performance out of hundreds of cities nationwide

Boulder ranked fourth out of almost 400 cities for economic performance as measured by metrics for job growth, average annual earnings, gross domestic product (GDP) gains and total jobs at new businesses. The report was created by the nonprofit economic group Heartland Forward.

“Boulder’s residents are fortunate to benefit from a diverse set of industries, institutions and businesses of varied types and sizes” said Yvette Bowden, assistant city manager and director of the City of Boulder Community Vitality Department.  “While this ranking is certainly good news, we must remain vigilant in monitoring and appropriately responding to the pandemic’s short and long-term impacts.”

The city has made significant efforts to help local businesses throughout the coronavirus pandemic by maintaining strong partnerships and incentivizing community support.  Some of the efforts to respond to the local economic impacts include:

  • $675,000 of funding to local businesses through Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding.
  • Gift card match program to encourage local spending.
  • Subsidized third party food delivery, including support for meals serving children and families in need.
  • Outdoor expansion for businesses and street closures to allow for physically distanced seating
  • Dedicated curbside pickup zones.
  • Funding support for sustainable takeout materials.
  • A responsible visitation campaign coordinated with the University of Colorado, Boulder Chamber, Downtown Boulder Partnership, and Boulder Convention and Visitors Bureau.

These initiatives are some examples of Boulder’s resilience in challenging times.

"This research offers insight into how our country's cities, which account for more than 88% of America's GDP, can position themselves for economic success," said Ross DeVol, president and CEO of Heartland Forward. 

"To help navigate the road to recovery from the pandemic, policymakers in regions across the country can use our report to better understand their communities and adapt their neighbors' strategies to their own needs. Heartland cities—even those that didn't make the top 30—are well-positioned to turn the COVID-19 crisis into an opportunity to thrive post-pandemic."

Find out more about how Boulder is supporting local businesses during COVID-19.