Ottawa County leading the way in job growth

Updated: Monday, February 11 2013, 06:20 PM EST
Ottawa County leading the way in job growth  story image
OTTAWA COUNTY, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) – One West Michigan county is leading the way when it comes to job growth.

New data released by the Upjohn Institute shows Ottawa County is growing faster than any other Michigan county.

In 2011 Kalamazoo saw one-third of one percent increase in private sector jobs, Grand Rapids saw two-tenths of a percent, and Battle Creek, just shy of one and a half percent.

Meanwhile Holland’s growth numbers came in at six and a half percent. That represents 6,000 new jobs created in 2012 alone with hundreds more already on their way in 2013.

Local leaders that Newschannel 3 spoke to say they would have never believed the news just a few years ago.

The shoreline of Ottawa County has become a destination for expanding companies.

“Not only is it a great place to live, it’s also a great place to work,” said Jane Clark, President of the Michigan West Coast Chamber. “We have our right heritage here in manufacturing and engineering and design, we are certainly known for our collaboration and cooperation and companies recognize this.”

We’ve seen that with the start of battery production at Johnson Controls and a new LG Chem facility. The West Coast Chamber says there is proof now with new numbers from the Upjohn Institute.

Of the 50,000 new jobs brought to Michigan in 2012, more than eight percent landed in Holland and the growth shows no signs of stopping.

Recently Perrigo announced plans to bring 650 new jobs to its Holland and Allegan campuses.

“To have a foot in both camps is very exciting, to see them expand is exciting, and to see those jobs in West Michigan is the icing on the cake,” said Randy Thelen, president of Lakeshore Advantage.

You can take a look at the numbers yourself by clicking here. Ottawa County leading the way in job growth
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