The Pittsburgh region is doing better than most others in cost of living, unemployment and job growth. That's according to a new benchmarking study released today by the Regional Indicators at Pitsburghtoday.org. The study, Pittsburgh Today and Tomorrow," measures a 22 county Pittsburgh region that includes some of eastern Ohio and northern West Virginia against 14 other cities: Baltimore, Boston, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Denver, Detroit, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, Richmond and St. Louis....in 10 categories: demographics, arts, education, economy, environment, housing, health, public safety, government and transportation.
The study looks at how the region rebounded since the early 1980's when unemployment topped 17%. Now the jobless rate remains well below the national average.
"We have by no means perfected the region, says Douglas Heuck, director of the Regional Indicators at Pittsburghtoday.org, "but after 30 years, we are poised to consider our regional future, not with a measure of fear, but from a position of strength."
While the Pittsburgh area experienced a net gain of 1,144 residents in domestic migration in 2009, the overall population declined by 434 due to more deaths than births.
The study indicates that in the transportation category 20% of road miles are listed in "poor" condition. Only Kansas City, Baltimore and Philadelphia have a higher percentage of poor or mediocre road miles.
Heuck says that Pittsburgh remains an arts rich region and the arts continue to attract visitors to the area.
The full report will be published in Pittsburgh Quarterly Magazine this week.