Why the Baltimore Washington Corridor

Why the Baltimore Washington Corridor?

The Baltimore Washington Corridor sits at the heart of America’s fourth largest marketplace, positioned between the Nation’s capital, Washington, DC, and the renascent port city of Baltimore.  The global center of political influence flanks our south, while the state of Maryland’s capital, Annapolis, houses not only the state legislative body but also the United States Naval Academy, whose officers provide leadership worldwide.

Arguably, we are also at the heart—the epicenter—for the world’s cyber industry.  With the National Security Agency, Defense Intelligence Agency, U. S. Cyber Command (and three of the four military branch’s cyber commands) all located in the Corridor, we have attracted the most capable and extensive cyber industry partners anywhere in the world.

As the renowned regional economist, Anirban Basu, wrote in his commissioned work, Top Ten Superlatives of the Baltimore Washington Corridor, “…the data illuminate the Corridor as a region associated with intense educational attainment, technological prowess, rapid innovation, high incomes, concentrations in key occupations, major corporate headquarters and atypical resistance to economic downturns.”

Working with professional demographers and statisticians, we have assembled the following:

Eighteen Amazing Facts about the Baltimore Washington Corridor

(Baltimore Washington Corridor data reflects the aggregation

of Anne Arundel, Howard, Montgomery & Prince George’s counties)

  • Population
    • Population in the Baltimore Washington Corridor is nearly one-half (46.1%) of the Maryland’s population in 2010.  This share is up from 45.5 percent in 2000.
    • Population growth in the Corridor between 2000 and 2010 (247,584, or 10.3%) was greater than in the rest of Maryland (229,482, or 8.0%).
    • The Corridor population is more ethnically diverse than the rest of Maryland.  Compared to the rest of Maryland, the Corridor has a higher share of: African Americans (31.6% vs. 26.8%); Asians (8.6% vs. 2.8%); and Hispanics (12.9% vs. 4.1%), and a lower percent of non-Hispanic whites (43.9% vs. 63.9%).
  • Housing and Households
    • There are over one-million housing units and over 965,000 households in the Corridor in 2010, 43.1 percent and 43.8 percent, respectively, of Maryland totals.
    • Unlike with total population gains, growth in households in the Corridor (85,367) did not exceed gains in the rest of Maryland (90,185).  There was proportionately less household growth than population growth in the Corridor compared to the rest of Maryland primarily because the average household size in the Corridor rose between 2000 and 2010, while remaining the same in the rest of Maryland.  The 2010 average household size in the Corridor (2.71, up from 2.69 in 2000) was well above the rest of Maryland (2.54 in 2010 and 2000).  The larger household sizes in the Corridor are to a large extent a function of the larger share of minority populations, which tend to be younger (and therefore have larger household sizes) than non-Hispanic whites.
    • Vacancy rates in 2010 in the Corridor counties, even though they have risen from 2000, are still well below rates in the rest of Maryland (even excluding seasonally vacant units).  The 2010 vacancy rate in the Corridor was 5.3 percent (up from 4.0 percent in 2000), well below the vacancy rate in the rest of Maryland (8.6%, up from 7.5% in 2000).
  • Income & Poverty
    • Howard ($101,940) and Montgomery ($94,420) counties had the two highest median incomes in the State in 2009. Anne Arundel ($80,300) and Prince George’s ($69,947) are also above the Maryland median ($69,272).
    • The 2009 per capita personal income in the Corridor of $54,955 is 29.1 percent higher than the rest of Maryland ($42,582).  Growth in per capita personal income between 2004 and 2009 for the Corridor ($8,565) was also greater than in the rest of Maryland ($6,977).
    • The overall 2009 poverty rate for the Corridor counties is 6.8 percent, with Howard County having the lowest rate (3.9%) and Prince George’s County the highest (7.5%).  All Corridor counties have poverty rates that are well below the overall rate for non-corridor counties (11.1%).
  • Foreign Born
    • Much of the diversity in the Corridor counties is explained by the fact that more than seven out of 10 foreign born residents in Maryland live in the Corridor counties.  Overall, approximately one out of five residents of the Corridor counties is foreign born, compared to 6.5 percent in the rest of Maryland.  The three counties with the highest concentrations of the foreign born in the State are in the Corridor:  Montgomery (30.8%), Prince George’s (18.1%), and Howard (14.9%).
  • Educational Attainment
    • The Corridor counties have some of the highest educational attainment levels in Maryland.  More than one-quarter (25.5%) of Corridor residents ages 25 and over have a bachelor’s degree.  An additional 25 percent have a graduate or professional degree.  In all, then, just over one-half of Corridor residents ages 25 and over have a bachelor’s degree or higher.  In contrast, for the rest of Maryland the percent of residents ages 25 and over with a bachelor’s degree or higher is 29 percent.
    • Another way to look at the Corridor’s concentration of brain power: the Corridor has 31.2 percent of the State’s adult population ages 25 and over, yet it has 40.4 percent of its bachelor’s degrees and 48.9 percent of its graduate and professional degrees.
  • Travel Times
    • Mean travel times to work within Corridor counties are higher than in the rest of Maryland.  In 2009, the estimated mean travel time for commuters to go to work was 32.8 minutes, well above the mean travel time of 30.0 minutes for the rest of Maryland.
  • Jobs by Place of Work
    • Nearly one-half of all jobs in Maryland are in the Corridor counties.  In 2009 Corridor counties accounted for 48.2 percent of all Maryland jobs, up from 47.7 percent five years earlier.  Between 2004 and 2009, the Corridor counties grew by nearly 72,000 jobs compared to a gain of 44,000 jobs for the rest of Maryland. 
  • Minority Businesses
    • A higher percentage of Hispanics compared to the rest of Maryland has led to the Corridor counties accounting for more than 79 percent (20,338) of the State’s Hispanic businesses in 2007.  These were predominately firms with no paid employees (18,078), although Hispanic firms in the Corridor counties accounted for more than 73 percent of the State’s sales from Hispanic firms.
    • Nearly 62 percent (63,079) of the State’s African American owned businesses were in Corridor counties.  The majority of these firms were in Prince George’s (39%) followed by Montgomery (14%).  Sales from African American firms in the Corridor counties were over 68 percent of the State’s African American business sales.
    • Of the State’s 35,864 Asian businesses in 2007, nearly 70 percent were located in Corridor counties, with approximately 14,000 of the firms in Montgomery County.  Asian businesses in the Corridor accounted for nearly 67 percent of total statewide sales from Asian firms.
    • Women owned businesses in the Corridor counties accounted for more than half (52%) of the State’s female headed firms and 57 percent of all statewide sales from women owned businesses.