[photo, Tugboat, Curtis Bay, Baltimore, Maryland]







Tugboat, Curtis Bay, Baltimore, Maryland, August 2000. Photo by Diane F. Evartt.

[photo, World Trade Center (a pentagonal building), East Pratt St., Baltimore, Maryland] On the Eastern seaboard, Maryland is strategically located for trade. It borders the District of Columbia, the nation's capital, to the south and is within hours by land of New York, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh. Nearly 90% of the State's population (5,296,486 in 2000) resides within the Washington-Baltimore Consolidated Metropolitan Statistical Area (CMSA), the fifth largest retail market in the country. Maryland's transportation infrastructure includes the Port of Baltimore, the Baltimore-Washington International Airport, two primary class I (annual revenues of $250 million or more) rail carriers and several arterial interstate highways. Maryland's highly developed transportation infrastructure is ranked sixth nationally in both interstate and freeway miles.

World Trade Center (a pentagonal building), East Pratt St., Baltimore, Maryland, August 2001. Photo by Diane F. Evartt.

Maryland has three foreign trade zones, (federally mandated, duty free sites). They are located at the Collington Business Center near Bowie in Prince George's County (#63); near BWI Airport (#73); and near Baltimore Harbor (#74). Since 1982, zone space has grown from 60,000 sq. ft. to 2 million sq. ft. Maryland also has 35 State Enterprise Zones, and a Federal Empowerment Zone. All zones offer businesses economic or tax incentives.

Through the third quarter of 2001, Maryland's economy, while weakening, continued to outperform the country as a whole. Biotechnology, software development and applications, and defense and security-related businesses maintained a strong presence, helping the State achieve relative stability during the national economic downturn. Maryland's investment in education should prepare the State for growth in sectors requiring highly educated workers; it also should offset losses in the manufacturing sector. In the nation, Maryland ranks first in the percentage of professional and technical workers and is poised to gain both defense and nondefense contracts for medical research, aircraft development, and security. Throughout this time, Maryland has retained its AAA bond rating.

Federal agencies located in Maryland have been a catalyst for the State's technology base. These include the National Institutes of Health, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Goddard Space Flight Center, and Department of Defense operations. Advanced technology enterprise is especially strong in telecommunications, computer sciences, and biotechnology.

Research parks facilitate joint research among universities, State and federal government institutions, and private industry. These parks include: The Johns Hopkins Bayview Campus (life sciences research) in Baltimore; and Shady Grove Life Sciences Center (biomedical & life sciences research) in Montgomery County, which holds the Center for Advanced Research in Biotechnology, part of the University of Maryland Biotechnology Institute. Other members of the Institute are the Center of Marine Biotechnology, the Medical Biotechnology Center, the Center for Agricultural Biotechnology, and the Institute of Human Virology. Also significant are the Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel and the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, both affiliated with The Johns Hopkins University. University of Maryland Baltimore County Research Park and Technology Center (life sciences & high technology research) on the Catonsville campus opened in 1996 to support high technology business development. In addition, the University of Maryland Baltimore County is leading a consortium of universities and private sector companies to develop the Goddard Earth Sciences and Technology Center. Center faculty and staff will collaborate with Goddard scientists in studying the earth's surface, atmosphere, and oceans.


Among all states, Maryland's workforce is the best educated. A third of its population aged 25 or older holds a bachelor's degree or higher (third highest among all states). More than 146,455 businesses employ 2.29 million workers who earn an annual payroll of $76 billion. Some 3,494 of these businesses employ 100 or more workers. Of private sector employees, 8.1% are union members.

Most Marylanders (86%) work in the widely defined service-producing sector. This category ranges from government positions to transportation-related professions, from wholesale trade to the finance and insurance industry. In 1998-99, the greatest growth in personal income (11.4%) occurred in the areas of finance, insurance, and real estate. Service careers top this list with 32% of the work force in the health, legal and education fields. One in five residents work in retail trade or for the government.


In 2000, major employers included Baltimore Gas and Electric Company, Bell Atlantic (Maryland), Giant of Maryland, Hecht's, Helix Health System, The Johns Hopkins Hospital, The Johns Hopkins University, Northrop Grumman, United Parcel Service, and Wal-Mart Associates.


In 2000, Maryland's high technology sector provided 163,742 jobs. There are over 6,500 technology companies with an estimated payroll of $11 billion in Maryland. State and local revenues of approximately $629 million are generated by these companies. Average weekly wages for technology companies reached $1,235 in 2000, with the biotechnology and biomedical sector recording the highest wage at $1,350 per week. St. Mary's County led all other counties in Maryland in its percentage of high technology jobs (19.4%), followed by Montgomery County (14.8%), Howard County (13.2%) and Anne Arundel County (11.1%).

During 2001, the job growth rate in Maryland fell to 1.4%, eighteenth highest in the nation, but twice the national average. Despite predictions of a continued slowdown into 2002, Maryland's job growth rate remains in positive territory while the national rate has shown zero or negative growth. Job losses have occurred in the State, however, especially in manufacturing, trade, and the travel and tourism sectors.


Per-capita personal income grew 6.7% in 2000 and ranked 5th in the nation at $33,621 per year. In the first quarter of 2001, Marylanders earned an average $739 per week and worked a 40.6-hour week. The unemployment rate in October 2001 was 4.3%, well below the 5.0% national average.

1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000
Maryland $41,500 $42,300 $43,300 $44,700 $46,300 $47,700 $50,016 **$51,715 $52,881

* Measured in year-prior dollars. A median average is a "middle" number below and above which there are an equal number of values.
**Highest in the nation and 28.3% above the national average.


1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000
Maryland $23,609 $24,400 $25,405 $26,896 $27,844 $29,222 $30,850 $32,517 $33,621
U.S. $20,631 $21,365 $22,180 $23,562 $24,651 $25,874 $27,322 $28,542 $29,451


1997 1998 1999
Maryland $29,112 $30,557 $32,517
AlleganyCounty $19,742 $20,429 $21,453
AnneArundelCounty $29,559 $30,827 $32,607
Baltimore City $23,501 $24,750 $26,665
Baltimore County $31,033 $32,269 $34,236
Calvert County $26,255 $27,063 $28,888
Caroline County $17,387 $18,375 $19,431
Carroll County $26,075 $27,389 $28,888
Cecil County $22,968 $24,646 $25,333
Charles County $25,613 $26,725 $27,701
Dorchester County $19,667 $20,766 $21,916
Frederick County $27,181 $30,021 $32,174
Garrett County $17,791 $18,293 $19,360
Harford County $25,372 $26,613 $27,907
Howard County $34,859 $36,294 $38,212
Kent County $24,888 $26,128 $28,165
Montgomery County $40,388 $42,393 $45,595
Prince George's County $26,815 $27,996 $29,547
Queen Anne's County $26,386 $26,878 $29,952
St. Mary's County $25,096 $27,354 $28,263
Somerset County $15,063 $16,006 $17,360
Talbot County $30,952 $32,754 $35,359
Washington County $22,141 $23,282 $24,162
Wicomico County $22,033 $22,929 $24,227
Worcester County $24,298 $25,109 $26,471

Sources for this data and additional information about Maryland's economy are available from the Department of Business and Economic Development, and the Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation. Socio-economic data about Maryland may be found through Planning Data Services, Department of Planning. Regional economic data may be found at the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Information about Smart Growth, Maryland's plan to revitalize older developed areas and discourage sprawling development into the state's rural areas, is accessible through the Office of Smart Growth, and the Department of Planning.

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