GLENS FALLS, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The Warren County Economic Development Corporation has a lot of work invested in showing businesses and employees what they could gain from moving their work to the region.
A lot of that work comes down to getting data on who is ready to make the move, how soon and where from, and this week the EDC highlighted findings in a study asking all of those questions.
In a blog post Monday, the EDC shared a study conducted by Camoin 310, a Saratoga-based business analytics company, surveying business markets across New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Vermont, New Hampshire and New Jersey, and beyond, to gauge their interest in a potential move to the area.
The response came mostly from the northeastern states the survey was targeting, but some also came from as far as Florida, California, Texas, Colorado, Missouri, Minnesota, Oregon and outside of the U.S.
6,733 survey responses were collected. Of those, around 25 percent said that they were either “very” or “somewhat” likely to relocate to Warren County or the Adirondacks within the next five years. The EDC has promoted everything from health care and internet speed to restaurant and shopping industries in their push to gain interest outside state lines, and those surveyed named all of those factors among their reasons for considering the move.
“We have known professional relocation to our area was underway, but this survey validates that the combination of world-class recreation and regional assets make this truly one of the most desired relocation sites in the world,” said Jim Siplon President of EDC, in a post. “It is clear we must work with our municipal, business, and professional partners throughout the region to better understand, plan for, and meet this exciting opportunity to enhance our local economies while keenly addressing the attendant demand for housing, broadband, and infrastructure this movement is also highlighting. ”
Lake George was a popular spot on the minds of those surveyed, listed as one of the top three locations being considered. The other two, Lake Placid and Saranac Lake, were outside of the county.
The survey showed that many feeling the draw of the mountains and lakes are those who already pay them visits. 42 percent of those surveyed said they visit the Adirondacks as much as 10 times per year or more.
The range of professions represented by the survey included education, health care, finance, insurance, information technology, skilled trades and professional services at large.
Warren County EDC has made it a point to most closely seek types of business not currently represented in the regional makeup.
Around 23 percent of demand in the North Country is for professionals between ages 25 and 45, and a commonality between people within those groups was housing and recreation options.
The housing point is especially important, as over 40 percent of responders who are currently employed reported having the ability to work from home.
That’s a factor the EDC has been looking carefully at for some time. The corporation has been working with Warren County to re-draw county broadband maps, which are currently five years out-of-date.
The EDC pushes cost of living as another draw, with data showing that the Glens Falls MSA has a lower cost of living index compared to many other popular areas. The overall index for the city is 118 overall, compared to numbers like 120 for Albany/Schenectady/Troy, 144 for New York City and 155 for Nassau/Suffolk.
The survey, which can be viewed in full online, reflects a fairly low degree of issue with the region’s cost of living. 42 percent of those surveyed say they would consider renting a dwelling for under $900 per month, and 53 percent for between $900 and $1399.
The work-from-home draw extends to the other two Adirondack lakes cited as attractive places to move. Saranac Lake and Lake Placid are both located in Essex County, further distanced from larger cities like Albany, but a fit for those able to work remotely while bringing their industries and families to a somewhat remote region.
“Remote workers are a growing industry in which the Adirondacks are positioned well to pursue,” said James McKenna, CEO of ROOST, Essex and Hamilton counties’ resident marketing organization. “Planned properly, new residents can sustain our communities, bring our school enrollments back to pre-2000 levels, and provide a better quality of life and services for our current residents.”
The survey can be read in full below: