Recently, I was hired to start the first residential real estate corporate relocation department in Northern Nevada. Nancy Fennell, President of Dickson Realty, created the position to meet the demand our region is experiencing. Reno and Sparks have never been hubs for relocation, but our area is changing and it’s largely due to the more than 64,000 people the Economic Development Authority of Northern Nevada (EDAWN) expects to move here between 2015 – 2020. There are countless reasons to move to Reno-Sparks, but here are my top three:
Entrepreneurship. According to The Kauffman Foundation, Reno-Sparks was ranked the most entrepreneurial community in the U.S. We rank in the top 10 most business tax-friendly states and have more per capita startups with five to 49 employees than any other metropolitan area of our size. Since 2013, the startup density in our area has grown largely as a result of investments such as the half a million Switch gave to build out the University Innevation Center and the regular contributions EDAWN makes to build programs and connect entrepreneurs with mentors. As the founding Assistant Director of University of Nevada Reno’s Ozmen Center for Entrepreneurship in The College of Business, I saw the first-hand impact of the $5 million gift from Eren and Fatih Ozmen.
Jobs. EDAWN conservatively projected 52,000 new jobs by 2020, including a significant portion of talent acquisition at Tesla/Panasonic. Although the ramp up for hiring at Tesla is not yet in full force, the innovative energy company will likely employ more than 6,500 people at the Gigafactory located in the Tahoe Regional Industrial Center (TRI Center). In 2017 alone, Panasonic will be hiring between 2,000-3,000 employees for battery manufacturing at the Tesla Gigafactory. The TRI Center will also be home to the Switch SUPERNAP, which, in addition to its own employees, will house 5,000 people from client companies such as eBay, Xerox, and DreamWorks.
Lifestyle. It’s certainly not all business in the Biggest Little City. Our backyard contains Lake Tahoe, the “No. 1 Lake in America” according to USA Today. The Weather Channel ranked our region the No. 5 “Top Spot for Winter Vacations” and National Geographic pinned Reno among the top 10 emerging ski towns. Livability.com marked us as No. 9 out of 100 best places to live and according to WalletHub.com’s food culture analysis, Reno is No. 6 out of the top 150 foodie towns. You can’t forget that we are also the airport landing zone and city connector to Burning Man, which influences many of the 191 pieces of public art and the 283 events held each year, including Artown, an entire month (July) dedicated to art. Reno is also home to the 86-year-old Nevada Museum of Art, the only accredited museum in the state.
Reno-Sparks truly is the whole package, a great place to live and to do business. The tax incentives, business climate and entrepreneurial ecosystem might attract new businesses who bring jobs, but the requisite talent make the choice to live in our area because the art and culture is woven into the fabric of our community.
By Kylie Rowe | Originally published in Bliss Babe Magazine March/April 2017