By now, most Atlantans have seen physical evidence of a blossoming tech culture from downtown’s Flatiron City and Ponce City Market to Buckhead’s Atlanta Tech Village—and most have probably heard rumors of local 22-year-olds pulling six figures.
Now, Forbes magazine helps to verify what city boosters have long been saying: that Atlanta is among the country’s hottest tech boomtowns.
In a report this month titled, “5 U.S. Cities Poised To Become Tomorrow’s Tech Meccas,” Atlanta earns the No. 3 position, just ahead of progressive West Coast darling Portland.
Atlanta isn’t just the only Southern city to be recognized—it’s the only place east of the Mississippi River, as New York has long been established as a tech titan.
The list, in order from the top: Salt Lake City (helped by huge recent investments by Amazon); Denver; Atlanta; Portland, and Seattle.
As Forbes reports, Atlanta’s total tech jobs—think software programming and developing and computer support roles—have exploded by almost 47 percent since 2010. That’s about 20 percentage points higher than the national average, which doesn’t sound too shabby.
One observer, QASymphony CMO Jeff Perkins, told the magazine Atlanta’s vibrant startup and business community—combined with world-class factories of tech talent in Emory University and Georgia Tech—indicates the current tech boom is hardly a fluke.
If all goes as planned, under-construction developments such as CODA at Tech Square and the Beltline-connected 725 Ponce offices—expected to replace Murder Kroger with 1,550 jobs—should only bolster the city’s standing as an emerging tech powerhouse.