Economic growth in Greater Richmond can only be described as explosive. This region is home to an impressive number of companies on the Fortune 500 and Fortune 1000 lists. More than three dozen firms enjoy annual sales exceeding $500 million, although Rich­mond’s economic ground is equally fertile for smaller companies and entrepreneurial activity. Both Dun and Bradstreet and Entrepreneur magazine have praised Richmond as the best mid-sized city in the U.S. for small business.

Greater Richmond claims more than 100 office and industrial parks, a quality work force, and building costs and business operations costs that fall below the national average. The average state and local taxes in Virginia are some of the lowest in the entire nation. Outstanding transportation resources include a network of interstate, U.S. and state highways; more than 100 motor freight companies; passenger and freight rail service and public bus service. In addition, the Richmond International Airport has established a reputation as a passenger friendly facility, accommodating over 200 daily domestic flights to and from major cities. The Port of Richmond is known as a service-oriented distribution center for containers and cargo.

Claiming outstanding enterprises like the Center for Innovative Technology‘s Biotechnology Institute and the Geriatric Education Center, Richmond sets the benchmark in genetic research. The city serves as the national headquarters of the United Network of Organ Sharing that links transplant centers and laboratories across the country. Health magazine even named Richmond as the “number one” city in the nation based on the opportunities for combining a healthy lifestyle with first-class medical care.

Thousands of skilled medical professionals represent every major specialty practice in Greater Richmond. Eighteen hospitals provide over 4,000 staffed beds, including the acclaimed Medical College of Virginia Hospitals. MCV Hospitals have been cited in the annual national study, 100 Best Hospitals – Benchmarks for Success, and also ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the America’s finest in gynecology, orthopedics and other specialties.

Quality opportunities for higher education, career training and continuing education are abundant in Greater Richmond. Students of all ages can choose from two community colleges—J. Sargeant Reynolds and John Tyler—that offer an affordable beginning to a four-year degree as well as certificate programs and associate degrees. Leading corporations has expanded options for specialized training in innovative programs like the Customer Service Academy or high-tech educational programs developed by a consortium of regional manufacturers.

The region’s four-year institutions combine public universities with private colleges like Randolph-Macon College in Ashland. The Virginia Commonwealth University, the University of Richmond, a University of Virginia extension campus, and Virginia Union University are located in Richmond. Virginia State University operates from its main campus in nearby Petersburg within the Tri-Cities area. Several colleges and universities offer continuing education branches in the City of Richmond including Averett College, Bluefield College, George Washington University, Mary Baldwin College, and Old Dominion University. The College of William and Mary in nearby Williamsburg also operates the Richard Bland College junior college in Petersburg.


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