According to the Partnership for Downtown St. Louis
(“Downtown Update,” 20 August 2010)

“Downtown St. Louis is gaining a growing reputation for being an Information Tech hub, due to an abundance of infrastructure, relatively cheap electricity, and a wealth of “knowledge workers.”  With recent announcements of the XIOLINK Data Headquarters, and with Unisys locating a new division in Downtown St. Louis, these recent investments continue to demonstrate that we have great communication infrastructure Downtown.”

Ironic photo courtesy of

St. Louis Skyline from Busch Stadium

St. Louis Skyline from Busch Stadium

St. Louis came in at #20, nationally.

Compiled by WomenCo

Their criteria:

We looked at cities’ growth rates, average salaries and costs of living.

We factored in average commute time — which, according to experts, has a colossal impact on your overall happiness.

We looked not only at unemployment figures, but also at the rate that unemployment has actually increased since February 2008.

Thinking of relocating for better job prospects? Need to compare two top contenders? Just curious to see where your city ranks? We’ve got you covered. Read on!

Ted Drewes Frozen Custard

Ted Drewes Frozen Custard

What they wrote about St. Louis:

#20. St. Louis, Missouri (USA)

Population: 354,361 (City of St. Louis; Metro area population is 2.7 million in 16 surrounding counties.)

Average Salary: $40,630

Cost of Living Rank (in a 1-100 list): 23

Average Commute Time: 21.5 minutes

Job Growth Rank (in a list of 372 Highest Growth Cities): 179

Unemployment Rate: 9.2 Known as the city that marks the divide between the Eastern and Western United States, St. Louis is often called the “Gateway City.” It’s home to some of our nation’s largest public and privately held corporations —Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Scottrade, Energizer and Anheuser-Busch Breweries are just a few of its best known local companies. And it didn’t just make our own short list of great cities — this charming city ranks among the whole world’s top 100 cities in terms of quality of life.

Bonus fun fact:  The ice cream cone was invented in St. Louis.

# # #

Kiener Plaza

Kiener Plaza

Editor’s note:  So hang in there, St. Louisans. The grass isn’t always greener on the other side of the fence—or the country. Enjoy all the free things there are to do in St. Louis this summer, while we wait out the economic slump. We still have so much for which to be grateful.


04.16.2009 12:08 pm

St. Louis Post-Dispatch

A year ago, high-ranking Chinese official Li Zhaoxing came to St. Louis to talk about plans for an air cargo connection between his nation and the Gateway City. Next month, according to St. Louis RCGA President Dick Fleming, another Chinese delegation will be here to continue that conversation. The group will include representatives of the China Investment Promotion Agency, and that’s a new twist to the relationship, Fleming explained:

They will be bringing investors here looking for investments in companies here and in the broader St. Louis marketplace.

The local companies wouldn’t necessarily have to be connected to the air-freight or cargo business, or even to the goal of finding ”back haul” products to ship from the Midwest to China. Fleming even brought up the possibility that Chinese companies might be interested in funding some of St. Louis’ promising life-sciences companies. He added:

This is an example of how this relationship can develop in a variety of ways beyond the aviation deal.

The aviation deal itself, of course, is in the nascent stage. The latest development was the formation of a Midwest China Hub Commission in January.

# # #


Editor’s note: Do you know the origins of the term “Mound City” used at the top of this story? Here’s an entry from the St. Louis Public Library’s Web site.

Before the Arch became the trademark of the ‘Gateway to the West,’ St. Louis answered to the nickname of “Mound City.”

While few these days could explain the origins of that name, there are still better than half-a dozen Mound City commercial listings in the local phone book.  Mounds are an important part of St. Louis’s history and image.

The mounds in question were constructed by native Americans about 1000 years ago.  People of the Mississippian culture shaped long-lasting earthen structures on both sides of the Mississippi River.

Click on the following link to read the entire article at the > St. Louis Public Library < Web site.

The St. Louis County Economic Council released the following information to the news media recently, indicating further movement in the positive direction towards establishing St. Louis, Missouri, as a Midwest China Hub for air cargo and trade:

Commission at Beijing Office

Commission at Beijing Office

ST. LOUIS, MO, April, 2009 — A delegation from the Midwest China Hub Commission travelled to Beijing in mid-March to continue talks with Chinese leaders. The goal of the trip was to promote economic ties between China and the Midwest through the creation of a St. Louis commercial air cargo hub. The strong working interest between St. Louis leaders and Chinese officials in advancing trade links prompted the opening of the Beijing office.

Mike Jones | Senior Policy Advisor

Mike Jones | China Hub Commission Chair

“With more than a year of discussions with Chinese officials, we are making concrete steps toward building the foundation of this ever-important project,” said Midwest China Hub Commission Chairman Mike Jones. “There is a significant level of interest on the part of the Chinese. Our Beijing-based office will allow us to be more productive with our communications and overall efforts with Chinese leaders.”

The Beijing office, which is housed in the building of London Export Corporation (LEC), will support the Commission’s efforts in administrative and research functions. It is in close proximity to key government offices and will act as the direct liaison with Chinese officials.

LEC Managing Director Stephen Perry, also is chairman of the 48 Group Club, an independent business network committed to promoting positive relations with China.

“Interest remains keen on both sides, and the opening the Beijing office is another step forward in a long-term effort by community leaders and our counterparts to work together to create an air cargo hub in St. Louis,” said Perry. The Beijing office represents the Commission’s commitment to the success of the project.

On January 26, the start of the Chinese New Year, China’s Ambassador to the United States Zhou Wenzhong came to St. Louis in coordination with St. Louis leaders to announce the formation of the Midwest China Hub Commission. The Commission, a public/private entity, is comprised of state and local governmental and business leaders working in partnership with China to coordinate efforts to make St. Louis a hub for China’s Midwest trade. posted a Special Report called “Best Places For Business and Careers” on March 25, 2009.

photo by Timothy K. Hamilton

photo by Timothy K. Hamilton

Everybody wants to be #1, but in this tough economy, I think it’s respectable for an older city in the Heartland (St. Louis) to come in at #86.

St. Louis beat out some seemingly more desirable cities like Cambridge and Boston, Massachusetts; New York, New York; Reno and Las Vegas, Nevada; San Diego, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, San Francisco, San Jose and Sacramento, Calfornia.

Chicago came in at #71, and I love to visit Chicago every year or so to get my fill of the hustle and bustle of the USA’s third largest city; however, the comparative numbers between Chicago & St. Louis in this report are not troubling for me. As the saying goes, there are “Lies, damn lies, and statistics.”

Businesswoman reads documentHere’s what I know: St. Louis has a much lower cost of doing business than Chicago, according to the report, and the lower job growth projected for St. Louis in the same report indicates a wide open opportunity for astute business persons looking to expand into the center of the US. So, I say, “Come on to St. Louis!”

New college graduates across Illinois and Indiana have for decades checked out Chicago for jobs, seen the over-abundance of competition for the same positions there, and brought their talent to St. Louis, instead.

They get better jobs sooner in St. Louis than in Chicago, and they decide to stay in St. Louis for the combination of opportunity, affordability and quality of life.

I know a lot of people who were born and raised and educated in Chicago. I would never want to put down their wonderful home town. I know them because they chose to live in St. Louis, though. Chose. To. Live. In. St. Louis.


The following photos by Timothy K. Hamilton, Creativity+, show some of the quality of life features in St. Louis, and more of Timothy’s spectacular work can be seen at his photostream on > LINK <.

According to,

in the 2000 census, Chicago’s working age population (i.e., between the ages of 25 & 64 years old) was counted at 1,513,663.
in the 2000 census, St. Louis’s working age population (i.e., between the ages of 25 & 64 years old) was counted at 173,877.

The Forbes rankings were based on a complicated mix of things, described this way on’s Web site,

(Rank)1 calculation: Index based on cost of labor, energy, taxes and office space.
(Rank)2 calculation: 3-year annualized figures.
(Rank)3 calculation: Share of Population over age 25 with a bachelor’s degree or higher.
Sources: Moody’s; Sperling’s BestPlaces.

Here are number for the first and last ranked, for Chicago and for St. Louis.

Rank = #1
Metro Area = Raleigh, North Carolina
Cost Of Doing Business (Rank)1 = 16
Job Growth Projected (Rank)2 = 15
Educational Attainment (Rank)3 = 11
Metro Area Population (in thousands) = 1,086

Rank = #71
Metro Area = Chicago, Illinois
Cost Of Doing Business (Rank)1 = 154
Job Growth Projected (Rank)2 = 50
Educational Attainment (Rank)3 = 42
Metro Area Population (in thousands) = 7,992

Rank = #86
Metro Area = St. Louis, Missouri
Cost Of Doing Business (Rank)1 = 76
Job Growth Projected (Rank)2 = 140
Educational Attainment (Rank)3 = 98
Metro Area Population (in thousands) = 2,839

Rank = #200
Metro Area = Modesto, California
Cost Of Doing Business (Rank)1 = 135
Job Growth Projected (Rank)2 = 190
Educational Attainment (Rank)3 = 192
Metro Area Population (in thousands) = 513

Here’s a > LINK < to a cool interactive US map with the cities and their rankings called out.

Image of St. Louis arch + fireworks and courthouse dome by Creativity+ Timothy K. Hamilton

Chinese Corner

Chinese Corner

中国朋友, 我想请 你們 来 这 博客, St. Louis 中国 拐角

你們 的 美国 的 朋友,

 丹哪  歌玛

Zhongguo pengyou, Wǒ xiǎnɡ qǐnɡ nǐmen li zhe boke, St. Louis Zhongguo Jiejao

Ninmende Meiguo pengyou,

Dan-na Ge-ma-shi









Image of Chinese Corner from Confucius Institute, London, England, United Kingdom
Image of English Corner from Hangzhou, Zhejiang, People’s Republic of China

Paric Corporation’s latest project in the NorthPark development, just east of Lambert St. Louis International Airport in Berkeley, Missouri, held its ribbon-cutting ceremony on (date).

stlnpgi_hilton_garden_inn_st_louis_airport_home_rightThe Inn is beautiful and a great addition to the offerings of lodging in the area immediately around the airport.

Here is the > link < to the Web site for the Inn with great photos and information about amenities.



 The Hilton Garden Inn at NorthPark is described on Paric’s Web site,

Clayco|Paric JV was the contractor for $12 million hotel and conference center as part of the NorthPark development in north St. Louis County. The 87,650 sq.ft. Hilton, includes a 5,000 sq.ft. attached conference center, is the first hospitality center at the mixed use development. The three story hotel has 136 rooms and was developed with Lodging Hospitality Management.

Paric’s Web site has additional project information and photos at this > link. <