South Carolina's Midlands region has shown significant growth in job creation, investment and construction activity, all of which coincides with the amount of manufacturing growth in the region.
The Midlands, which includes Calhoun, Aiken, Darlington, Clarendon, Florence, Fairfield, Lexington, Kershaw, Lee, Orangeburg, Newberry, Saluda, Richland, and Sumter counties, had a vacancy market rate of 8.9 percent in the first quarter of 2015.
Throughout the region, finding large blocks of quality industrial space is difficult as such spaces are in low supply. Tenants are often competing with other industrial businesses for the same space.
While the Low Country and Upstate portions of South Carolina wrestle with small spaces for tight inventories, the Midlands may be able to take advantage of this time to attract new investors.
Recent data shows that the manufacturing industry as added 4,100 jobs to the Midlands region since March 2010. Experts estimate this figure will only increase as time continues. In 2014 alone, 2,100 manufacturing jobs were created in the area, and the Midlands experienced a 7.3 percent growth rate, the area's largest since 2006.
Experts attribute these changes to several factors that impact the regional economy: the increase of wages in the Pacific Rim and China, growth in domestic consumer spending, lower energy costs, a recovering European market, a stronger economy within the U.S., and novel manufacturing innovations.