October 21, 2014

community portrait

Jacksonville

More than just gathering data, we're capturing elements that make each community distinctive.

Economic Life

White Collar: 79% Blue Collar: 21%

Call Centers: About eight of every 100 workers are employed at call centers.

Working for a Living: Duval County’s per-capita income is $36,616, on par with the state average. Its largest major private-industry sector is healthcare, with 13% of all employees, followed by retail trade, with 12%, and finance and insurance, at 10%. Significant layoffs in finance and retail during the economic downturn have hit Jacksonville hard, but the city’s unemployment rate of slightly under 9.7% is still lower than the statewide average of 10.2%.

Major Economic Engines

The U.S. Navy:
Cecil Field’s closure in 1999 shrunk the Navy’s presence somewhat, but Jacksonville is one of the biggest Navy hubs in the southeastern United States. Between its Naval Air Station just four miles from downtown and its station at Mayport, the Navy is still the largest employer in the area, with more than 35,000 civilian and active-duty personnel. The 6,000-acre Cecil Field site is being redeveloped as the Cecil Commerce Center and is coming into its own for commercial and industrial activity. It primarily supports aviation and aerospace companies, including Boeing, Logistical Services International, Northrop Grumman and FlightStar.

the Navy in Jacksonville
Jacksonville is one of the biggest Navy hubs in the Southeast.
[Photo: Daniel Gay/U.S. Navy]

Healthcare:
Four major health systems give Jacksonville not only high-quality medical care, but the biggest professional employment base in the city: Baptist Health System employs nearly 5,600; the Mayo Clinic, 5,000; St. Vincent’s Medical Center, 3,796; and Shands Jacksonville, 3,500. The University of Florida Proton Therapy Institute at Shands is one of only five facilities devoted to this cancer treatment in the country. In addition, the Nemours Foundation, based in Jacksonville, operates a children’s hospital in Wilmington, Del., along with satellite facilities in Jacksonville and Pensacola, and is building a hospital in Orlando.

JaxPort:

The Jacksonville Port Authority, known locally as JaxPort, is an international trade seaport with three public marine terminals at Blount Island, Talleyrand and Dames Point. It generates some 50,000 direct and indirect jobs in northeast Florida and handles not only cargo containers but is No. 2 in the nation behind NY/NJ for vehicle imports and exports.

Jaxport
JaxPort generates about 50,000 direct and indirect jobs. [Photo: Kelly Laduke]
The TraPac Container Terminal opened at Dames Point this year; the $230-million joint project with Mitsui O.S.K. Lines is expected to open up container trade with Asia, especially when the Panama Canal expansion is complete. Together with Jacksonville International Airport and railroad companies CSX and RailAmerica, the area bills itself as a major transportation hub. In addition, Landstar System, a billion-dollar transportation services company, contracts with thousands of independent freight agents and truckers to move more than a million loads of freight each year.

Insurance and Financial Services:
Jacksonville has a long history as a banking and insurance center. Barnett Bank is long gone, but Prudential Insurance, whose building is a longtime fixture in the city’s skyline, is still a major employer. Fidelity National Financial, a real estate, insurance and financial services giant that employs more than 15,000 nationwide through subsidiaries like Fidelity National Title Group, moved its headquarters to Jacksonville in 2003.

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