With the lowest cost of business (KPMG’s 2016 Competitive Alternatives), Ouachita Parish acts as a population center and economic hub for northeast Louisiana. Recently, Ouachita Parish has seen a flurry of announcements and expansions. CenturyLink, the nation’s second largest communications provider in the U.S., expanded its corporate headquarters in Monroe, LA. The expansion added another 800 new jobs.  IBM located a client innovation center in Monroe, adding another 400 new tech jobs.

Graphic Packaging International invested $274 million to build a new carton converting plant in Monroe and to modernize its existing paper mill in West Monroe. Gardner Denver Thomas and other companies have all announced expansions in Ouachita Parish- a testament to the competitive advantages businesses will find here. Ouachita offers a diverse and thriving economy with:

  • a multimodal transportation system of interstate, Class 1 rail, air, and port service
  • a civilian labor force of 71,944
  • five nearby universities, colleges and vocational schools
  • an estimated 2016 population of 157,010 residents,  earning a median household income of $40,503.
  • unemployment rate at 4.1% (December 2017)
  • a stable and thriving housing market
  • numerous industrial parks and certified sites

Those considering locating to Ouachita Parish will find a variety of affordable housing options from downtown condos, beautiful single family house, apartments and duplexes. Families will find top quality public and private schools.  Ouachita Parish public schools is ranked in the top 20 of school districts in Louisiana, according to Louisiana Dept. of Education’s 2015 performance scores.

Smog-free, family-friendly communities, easy commutes, and a low cost of living translates into the “Happiest Place to Live” according to Harvard researchers.