The Texas economy as a whole may slow due to the oil price collapse, but the DFW area economy remains strong. Job growth remains robust, with the DFW metropolitan area adding an astonishing 110,500 jobs in the 12 months ending May 2015, which represents an annual increase of 3.4 percent in employment. As a result of the job growth, the area’s unemployment rate has dropped 120 basis points to 3.8% over the prior 12 months, its lowest point since 2001 and well below the national average of 5.5%.
In its largest U.S. investment this year, General Motors announced plans on Tuesday for $1.4 billion in improvements to its Arlington Assembly Plant to help improve production of its popular full-size sport utility vehicles. The renovation and expansion will reconfigure the plant with a new paint shop, body shop and general assembly area upgrades. This is intended to expand its production capacity, since the plant already operates 24 hours a day and is the lone global facility that builds full-size SUVs for the company. It will add about 1 million square feet and 600 new jobs to the facility, over the next 3 years.
In July 2015, Forbes released a report on the Cities Creating the Most White-Collar Jobs. Over the past decade, Business Services has emerged as easily the largest high-wage sector in the United States, employing 19.1 million people. Since 2004, while the number of manufacturing and information jobs in the U.S. has fallen, the Business Services sector has grown 21%, adding 3.4 million positions. Texas had both No. 5 Austin-Round Rock and No. 6 Dallas-Plano-Irving.
S. builders broke ground on apartment complexes last month at the fastest pace in nearly 28 years, as developers anticipate that recent jobs gains will launch a wave of renters. The Commerce Department said that housing starts in June climbed 9.8% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.17 million homes. All of that growth came from a 28.6% surge in multi-family housing that put apartment construction at its highest rate since November 1987. Nationally, starts for single-family houses slipped 0.9% last month, while housing starts in the South were up 1.1% month-over-month and were up 10% over June 2014.
Officials have broken ground on the Town of Flower Mound’s first hotel, a Courtyard by Marriott. The hotel will be part of the River Walk at Central Park mixed-use development area and will be five-stories with 146 guest rooms, 39 of which will include balconies overlooking the River Walk. It is expected to be completed by mid-2016.
Fairway Drive, commonly known as the Dam Road, reopened to motorists Friday, July 17th!