#1 Leading Location

Area Development statistically analyzes around 400 MSAs/cities across 21 key economic indicators every year. The combined results identified the top 100 MSAs who are moving in the most upward projection as measured by GMP, job creation, wages and other key economic indicators and whose strengthening economies should be attractive to potential new investment going forward. Once again, Columbus, Indiana, is ranked in the top ten among all U.S. metros, ranking #1 in the Midwest, #2 Small City, and #6 overall in 2018. Learn more.

Business Environment Rankings

  • #9 U.S. Metro for Economic Growth Potential Advanced Manufacturing Specialization (Business Facilities Magazine July/August 2018) Read More
  • Top 2% USA Manufacturing Employment (Bureau of Labor Statistics 2018)
  • Home to more mechanical engineers per worker than any other metropolitan area in the United States (248/1,000 workers, BLS 2018)
  • Ranked one of the top 30 “Best Small Places for Business and Careers‘” nationwide (Forbes.com/2018)
  • Top 25% “Best Performing Small Cities” for High-Tech GDP & Job Growth (Milken Institute Report 2018)
  • Ranked #1 U.S. Metro for Export Intensity (Brookings Institution 2017)

Nationally Ranked Architecture

Columbus, Indiana is ranked sixth in the nation for architectural innovation and design by the American Institute of Architects, right behind Chicago, New York, San Francisco, Boston and Washington, D.C. Visitors to Columbus can see more than 70 buildings and pieces of public art by internationally noted architects and artists, including I.M. Pei, Eliel Saarinen, Eero Saarinen, Richard Meier, Harry Weese, Dale Chihuly and Henry Moore, and a visit to Columbus wouldn’t be complete without a tour of the Miller House and Garden to experience the heralded designs of Eero Sarrinen, Dan Kiley, and Alexander Girard. The Columbus story has been featured in dozens of regional and national publications, including CBS’s Sunday Morning, National Geographic, The New York Times, The Chicago Tribune, and Midwest Living. Read more about our world renowned architecture, public art, and tour information at the Columbus Visitors Center website.

Site Selection

Columbus, Indiana has made it’s way into the May 2019 edition of the Site Selection magazine where Hoosier Energy and the Bartholomew County REMC are given recognition for their accomplishments done within our city along with the Greater Columbus Indiana Economic Development Corporation.

“Our organization (Columbus Indiana EDC) was formed in 1976 to diversify the economy , and our first foray into FDI came in 1978. We have been pursuing FDI for more than 40 years now.”

Columbus ranks in the top 2% of counties in the U.S. because of the high concentration of manufacturing jobs. This can also be attributed to the city having two regional campuses (Indiana University-Purdue University of Columbus and Purdue Polytechnic), which allows students to receive degrees in mechanical engineering, industrial engineering, and other related programs.

Coolest City to Visit

High-end travel agents named Columbus, Indiana one of “The 10 Coolest U.S. Cities to Visit in 2018” in a 2018 Forbes.com list. The architecture and history in Columbus, Indiana “is sure to put the small but mighty Midwestern city on the map. Visit now, before the crowds descend.”

Small Town Takes the Spot Light

In 2017 Columbus, Indiana was home to the filming of the movie “Columbus.” The film premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival and continued on to receive excellent reviews from critics along with being given a 97% by Rotten Tomatoes. New York Times critic stated, “The existence of a debut as confident and allusive as “Columbus” is almost as improbable as the existence of Columbus, Indiana where the movie is set.”

Indiana Business Environment Rankings

  • Indiana ranks first in the Midwest and 10th nationally in the Tax Foundation’s 2019 Business Tax Climate Index
  • Indiana ranks 5th in the nation (#1 in the Midwest) in Chief Executive magazine’s annual “Best & Worst States” 2019 survey.
  • Indiana ranks best in the Midwest and 9th overall  in Area Development magazine’s “Top States for Doing Business” study of 2018
  • Indiana was the 23rd state in the nation and the first state in the industrial Midwest to pass right-to-work legislation in 2012
  • Indiana had 8.8% union membership in 2018, lower than the U.S. average of 10.2% and lower than all neighboring states (BLS Jan 28, 2019 Release)