- Tampa has been listed among TIME Magazine’s ‘World’s Greatest Places 2023’ list, with its downtown district and economic growth highlighted.
- Tampa’s downtown development project, which includes the opening of high-end hotels and restaurants, as well as an emerging tech scene, was praised.
- The city’s low taxes, minimal regulations, and incentives for businesses were also credited for its economic growth.
Tampa has garnered global recognition, earning a spot on TIME Magazine’s ‘World’s Greatest Places 2023‘ list, published on Thursday. The distinction spotlights the city’s burgeoning downtown district amidst robust economic growth indicators.
One of just six U.S. locations to appear on the list, Tampa received praise for its multi-billion-dollar downtown development project that has ushered the opening of five-star restaurants and hotels, alongside an emerging tech industry scene.
According to a Florida market report published by Berkadia last year, the Tampa Bay area is one of the top corporate relocation spots in the state, recently welcoming Suzuki Marine, Pfizer, The Mosaic Company, and others.
“The development is at the crux of a downtown renaissance that’s seen Tampa finally take full advantage of what’s been here all along–water, water, everywhere, between the Hillsborough River and Tampa Bay,” Terry Ward writes. “The city has become an entrepreneur and millennial magnet.”
Tampa’s business-friendly environment, with low taxes, minimal regulations, and incentives for businesses, has played a significant role in the city’s economic growth. The city is known for its robust healthcare sector, with world-class hospitals such as Tampa General Hospital, research facilities, and medical schools attracting top talent and investments. Tampa’s financial sector is also flourishing, with many institutions and banks like Raymond James and USAmeriBancorp headquartered in the area.
The tourism industry also operates as an essential contributor to the economy, with millions of visitors coming to the city each year to enjoy its warm climate. In 2022, Tampa collected more than $1 billion in taxable hotel revenue, with county-wide hotel revenue climbing to $1.02 billion, a 43.1 percent increase over the previous year, according to Visit Tampa Bay. Meanwhile, tourist development tax collections for the 2022 fiscal year reached $57.8 million, a 56.5 percent increase compared to the prior fiscal year.
The city’s strong job numbers continue to attract new residents. The most recent state employment data reports reflect that Tampa’s private sector employment grew by 72,600 jobs year-over-year, an increase of 5.6 percent, leading all state metro areas in job gains. Further, as of January of this year, the Tampa area’s unemployment rate decreased to 2.6 percent, a decrease of 1.1 percentage points from the year-ago rate of 3.7 percent.
TIME also highlighted the ever-expanding Tampa International Airport, touching on recently implemented non-stop European flights to London, Frankfurt, and Zurich. The airport is currently undergoing a terminal expansion to install 16 new airline gates.
“With Tampa’s first nonstop flight from Heathrow via Virgin Atlantic debuting late last year; easy access to the art-loving, dog-friendly city of St. Pete; and plenty of sun, sand, and sea in nearby Pass-a-Grille Beach and Clearwater; there’s never been a more appealing time to touch down,” Ward writes.