Chicago … the Fourth City ??? Projections cited in a recent story by the Reuters news service say Houston will surpass Chicago in population within ten years: 2.7 million for Houston to 2.5 million for Chicago. It can't be the weather. Can it?
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“I think it's a couple of things,” says Andria (cq) Winters, assistant director of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. “One: A number of the costs are lower than Illinois. I think Texas also does a good job of marketing, frankly, and you have an economic development team that's really proactive and really aggressive. And they also have a partially private economic development organization, like a number of the other states that are outcompeting us right now.”
Winters says it's a state problem, not one of, say, Chicagoans moving to the suburbs. The key to improvement, she says, in two words: Turnaround Agenda.