Posted 11/21/2011 12:00 am
Updated 10 months ago
Located 30 miles from Little Rock, Conway is the northwestern entryway into the metro region and is attracting relocating families and new businesses that appreciate its quality of life. The city of nearly 60,000 is home to three colleges, scenic lakes and parks, a thriving business community, and a number of cultural and recreational opportunities.
The University of Central Arkansas, Central Baptist College and Hendrix College give the city a more youth-oriented outlook than many comparable cities. This is evident in the city-owned sports parks, which include a skate park, a soccer complex, and new softball and baseball complexes. The City of Colleges also has an astounding array of recreational and cultural activities — from Broadway shows to sporting events.
The three institutions of higher learning also produce graduates who stay in the area and enter the workforce. Nearly 40 percent of Conway’s adults have a post-secondary degree. This educational level is a boon to employers in all fields, and Conway has a variety, including traditional manufacturing, education, health services, and technology and information services.
Conway’s growing technology sector is driving its economic development. Acxiom, one of the nation’s largest data centers, was founded in Conway and is one of the city’s largest employers. In 2008, Hewlett-Packard located a customer service and technical support center in Conway that employs 1,400 people.
Retail growth also continues to escalate. Large national retailers are discovering the city and helping to establish it as a regional shopping hub. The downtown area, thanks to the untiring efforts of the Conway Downtown Partnership, is also luring residents with trendy boutiques, antique stores and eateries. Additionally, a mix of national chains and locally owned stores offers convenient neighborhood shopping throughout Conway.
During 2011, a number of media outlets spotlighted Conway and the Little Rock–North Little Rock–Conway metropolitan statistical area (MSA) as one of the nation’s top places to live and do business:
• America’s Second Least Toxic City, Forbes
• Seventh Best Value City for 2011, Kiplinger
• Ninth Place Within Single-Digit Percentage Points of Its Home-Value Peak, The Wall Street Journal
• 14th Best City for Young Professionals, Forbes
• 14th Cheapest City in the U.S., Bloomberg Businessweek
• 24th Best Place to Retire, CNNMoney
• 100 Leading Locations: Desirable Places for Doing Business, Area Development Online
As you can see, Conway is the smart choice for people in all stages of life to call home — whether they are attending college, searching for employment, raising a family or settling into retirement.