Denver is a city of nearly three million, strategically located in the heart of the American West, at the base of the majestic Rocky Mountain range and a famous mile high above sea level. Known for both its natural beauty and historic significance, the town still boasts some of the Old West idiosyncrasies that make it an interesting place to live and work. However, these qualities barely scratch the surface of the answer to “Why Denver?”
No More a Cow Town
For more than twenty years, Denver has been shaking off the once held “cow town” persona with deliberation. Beyond the decades long cultural boom that Denverites have been experiencing– bringing unique architecture and internationally renowned art centers to the Mile High City, this growing metropolis has also benefited from the recent international tech explosion.
A (Sunny) Business Hub
Maybe it’s the annual 300+ days of sunshine or the vicinity to awesome skiing and snowboarding that drive international and domestic businesses to set up shop in Denver. Maybe it’s the longstanding businesses and the stable economy. Either way, there seems to be some kind of magnetic pull in the center of Colorado that is drawing businesses in.
The Denver branch of the World Trade Center has more than 250 companies and individual members. International organizations like Google, IBM, Oracle, MapQuest and Frontier Airlines have long called Denver either home base or used it as a key location.
Other, non-tech, albeit important, companies like Quiznos, Chipotle, Western Union and Re/Max grew established operations in Denver and stretched their reach into international territory after remarkable growth. The city is also home to thousands of successful startups. According to a 2013 Forbes article, a new startup launches in Denver every 72 hours.
A Multicultural City
The population of Denver also reflects the international feel of the city. It’s all well and good to have a bunch of homogeneous locals conducting business via Skype with their international branches, but that is not what makes an international culture. In addition to being one of the top ten fastest growing cities in the United States, Denver is becoming more diverse and is doing more to foster a multicultural experience.
Selected to host the 2015 Biennial of the Americas, Denverites had the opportunity to engage with multicultural artists, innovators, leaders and experts from North, South and Central America and the Caribbean. The symposium created a venue for international collaboration around the most pressing issues of our time.
Additionally, the rapid influx of new and diverse people means that it is easier to connect with others. There tends to be more of a readiness to meet new people in an environment where many others are new and looking to network.
A historically stable economy kept the Mile High City afloat with lower unemployment levels and faster recoveries after the recent recession. Furthermore, home values never dropped quite as drastically as they did in other parts of the country when the real estate bubble popped in 2007.
Perhaps it was this stability that lured business, both homegrown and international, to set up base here. Perhaps it was the other way around. Whether it’s the chicken or the egg, it is safe to stay that Denver is good to the business world and the business world reciprocates its kindness. The city’s export revenue grew 37% in 2014 and foreign multinational firms now support over 83,000 jobs in Colorado.
An International City
Denver has a lot going for it in terms of local culture and natural excellence, but the important takeaway from recent growth is the city’s interconnected development. What was once an isolated pit stop on a mining route has now become one of the most popular, international business hubs in the world. And it’s still growing.
It won’t be long before the term “cow town” is lost in the annals of history. For future reference, Denver is a Wow Town.
Learn more about studying Academic English in Denver here.