Bowling Green named top 20 manufacturing city in the country

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. – Global Trade Magazine, an authority for American companies doing business globally, has listed Bowling Green among the Top 20 cities in the United States for manufacturing. Bowling Green ranked number 2 on their list with the magazine citing the following, the fact that “every Chevrolet Corvette made since 1981 came from Bowling Green” ought to tell you something about the city’s manufacturing base.

“In 2017, about 17 percent of the city’s workforce was in manufacturing (up from 14.4 percent just five years previously)”, according to USA Today, and they are responsible for $1.1 billion in exports. The manufacturing base in the city is incredibly diverse.

The diversity of Bowling Green is one of its signature strengths. More than 85 languages are spoken in this community, and 22 international manufacturing companies representing nine different countries are located within Bowling Green.

“Our diversity of international companies and exceptional business climate make us a key destination for manufacturers seeking to expand or open facilities in the United States,” said Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce president and chief executive officer Ron Bunch.

Bowling Green’s largest manufacturers are Bowling Green Metalforming, General Motors Corvette Assembly Plant, Henkel AG & CO, Kobe Aluminum Automotive Products, Country Oven Bakery and Trace Die Cast. These six facilities employ over 5,200 people, and the value of their economic impact exceeds $14.4 billion. The employees at these facilities also contribute over $345 million to the economy each year by making purchases at local businesses. Their jobs also help support over 8,000 other jobs in the community.

Bowling Green’s strong manufacturing ecosystem has spurred continued growth in smaller manufacturing companies as well. As a result, the city’s manufacturing employment is more than double the national rate of 8%, due to continued investment and employment expansion by a variety of firms in our manufacturing base.

In addition, Bowling Green and Warren County have continued to invest in infrastructure and product development initiatives. The South-Central Kentucky Industrial Park and the Kentucky Transpark have benefited from increased funding for road projects that will open new sites for development. This includes the creation of Prosperity Drive in the Transpark and Southwest Parkway serving the SCKIP, while simultaneously preparing more build-ready sites. Companies like CROWN Cork and Seal USA, Dollar General, and CGS Machine & Tool made announcements in 2020 to locate in or expand within these business parks.

“Investing in product development is critical to our long-term strategy for recruiting additional manufacturing and distribution companies. We continue to invest and know that when we do, new companies will decide to locate in Bowling Green,” said Bunch.

“We have been incredibly successful in recruiting new manufacturing and distribution companies to our business parks. In conversations with executives they often cite our existing business base, strategic location, workforce, and available sites as reasons for choosing Bowling Green,” said Mayor Bruce Wilkerson.

“Global Trade Magazine Naming Bowling Green the #2 city in the country for manufacturers is a true honor. Their recognition of Bowling Green as a destination city for the manufacturing sector is a testament to our collaboration to create a globally competitive business climate. We look forward to continuing to provide this high level of support as we facilitate the growth of our manufacturing sector into the future,” said Warren County Judge-Executive Mike Buchanon.

Year to date, the Bowling Green Area Chamber of Commerce has closed three projects totaling $176.3 million in capital investment and generating 206 new jobs for 2020. Bowling Green was recently recognized by Site Selection magazine as a top tier-2 metropolitan area in the United States which marks the seventh straight year that Bowling Green has been ranked as top metropolitan area.