21 States Honored for Economic Development Effectiveness

Area Development has issued its 2015 Gold & Silver Shovel awards recognizing excellence in state job creation and economic development efforts. Texas, Georgia, Tennessee, South Carolina, and Nevada won the five Gold Shovel honors for their respective population categories.

The awards are based on the top ten economic development projects initiated in 2014 in each state by evaluating a combination of weighted factors, including the number of new jobs to be created in relation to the state’s population, the combined dollar amount of the investments, the number of new facilities, and the diversity of industry represented. 16 other states won runner-up Silver Shovel honors, including Pennsylvania and New York, where the top projects included the $5 billion SolarCity GigaFactory in Buffalo; a Pratt & Whitney aerospace investment in Middletown; and an optical/pharmaceutical project in Rochester.

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