Urbana Named a Top Startup City by Popular Mechanics

Categories : Features, Recognition & Awards
Posted on: January 14, 2015

Popular Mechanics released its “14 Best Startup Cities in America” in February issues — and a familiar name is on the list. 

Urbana ranks No. 11. St. Louis, just down the road, was ranked No. 1; other Midwest locations on the list are Cleveland, Detroit, and Des Moines. Urbana is one of the smallest cities on the list, which also includes Portland, Maine; Oakland; Austin; Asheville; Holyoke, Mass.; Baltimore; Queens; Boulder; and Reno. 

Research Park Director Laura Frerichs was interviewed for the article, which highlights the area’s history of innovation via its connection to the University of Illinois as well as companies started by alumni. It also cites the enterpreneurial support system as well as the favorable cost-of-living. 

“… since the cost of living is only slightly higher than the cost of those free (entrepreneur) consultations, Urbana is as good a place to grow your business as it is to conceive of it,” they wrote. 

News coverage of this recognition: 

Smile Politely: “Urbana named one of “The 14 Best Startup Cities in America” by Popular Mechanics”
WAND-TV : “Urbana recognized as a top city for startups”
WCIA 3: “Local community rated great place to start a business