Monday, May 11, 2009

Transit Space Race Continues

Atlanta and Charlotte are still fighting it out on the pages of the AJC.

“We could’ve easily become a Knoxville, Greensboro or Richmond,” McCrory said. “Instead we compete, fortunately, with Denver, Dallas and Atlanta.”

Charlotte, the Queen City, maintains pretensions of one day surpassing Atlanta as economic King of the South. Sam Williams, head of Atlanta’s Chamber of Commerce, says dream on.

“We don’t really compete tooth-and-nail with Charlotte because the companies we go after (are) in the international trade, logistics and biomedical fields and they’re not looking to go to Charlotte,” he said. “Dallas, Tampa and northern Virginia — those are our consistent competitors.”

But some observers say recent missteps by Atlanta — over traffic, transit, water, the environment and politics — may enhance Charlotte’s position.

How you plan your region will make a difference in its competitiveness for the future. While Atlanta might blow off Charlotte, I wouldn't be so quick to cast them off.


Patrick said...

Once upon a time, in 1950 or so, Birmingham competed with Atlanta. But then we made a few mistakes involving dogs and fire hoses, and now we're left hoping for better connections to Atlanta so they can carry us along.

Alon Levy said...

Tampa is a metro area of 2.7 million, which is one of the few nationwide that gets more money in federal spending than it pays with taxes. If that's Atlanta's competition, then Atlanta's in trouble.

Mike Lydon said...

Having spent some time in each city over the past year, I must say Charlotte is a superior city, and despite its ills, has a brighter future. It's gigantism is not quite as pronounced.