The organization concludes Pinal County is well-positioned for the future, according to the release which quotes from the market overview: “As neighboring Maricopa County grows, so does Pinal County. Pinal has the advantage of available land, more affordability and promising job growth thanks to major corporate development.”
“Last year we saw $3.5 billion in capital investment and in the last 14 months it has been $7.9 billion and 15,000 new jobs,” Economic Development Program Manager Tim Kanavel said in the release. “The recent announcement of Dreamport Villages resort is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to big things heading our way. 2017 is off to a great start and it could be a better year than 2016.”
Land Advisors examined several factors to develop its positive outlook for Pinal County.
Population estimates from the Arizona Office of Economic Opportunity predict the final 2016 population growth will be 2.6 percent to around 417,000 residents. There is speculation that Pinal County could have over a million residents before 2049 thanks to job growth and lack of affordable housing in Maricopa County.
“To many people locally, that 1 million mark is almost too much to comprehend. We’ve been this sleepy little county for such a long time to imagine 1 million people here is mind-blowing,” Board of Supervisors Chairman Steve Miller said in the release. “By all indications, those people are coming and they are going to need jobs, homes and roads. It is incumbent on us to plan for that now and not let it catch us unprepared.”
Another factor that went into the Land Advisors analysis was the amount of housing permit activity in the county.
Permit totals are up 22 percent and Casa Grande’s new home permits have risen 74.7 percent based on figures from the Home Builders Association of Central Arizona.
Pinal County housing is also more affordable than in Maricopa County. Pinal County’s median home price is $213,846. That compares favorably to Chandler’s $386,934 median home price and Gilbert’s $351,500 price.
“The time to be investing in Pinal County is now,” County Manager Greg Stanley said in the release. “We have a supportive board of supervisors and a very active economic development program. We have the train running at full steam and we are not going derail it.”