At this point it’s clear: Seattle is a full-blown tech city. The rise of tech giants like Microsoft and Amazon over the last two decades has transformed this once blue-collared metropolis into a technological heaven. Now, a series of new reports puts the city on par with America’s original tech epicenter, Silicon Valley.
Over the last year, new tech-related jobs in Seattle have grown at double the rate of any other U.S. city. These positions currently account for 42 percent of all office jobs in the area and amount to around 165,000 high tech software and service positions overall. What’s more, a report from Business.org found that Seattleites have the third highest tech salaries in the country, with just a few thousand dollars separating us from first and second place finishers San Jose and San Francisco. Raking in an average of $111,110 in 2018, techies in Seattle are making more money than Jeff Bezos, whose annual Amazon "salary" is a mere $81,840.
But Amazon will have some competition. Commercial real estate blog Commercial Cafe recently named Seattle the best city on the West Coast for startups—and we have a lot. Ranging from clothing rental service Armoire—a company that essentially takes Tom Haverford’s Rent-A-Swag business model from Parks and Recreation and successfully applies it to the modern business woman—to more outlandish startups like Atomo Coffee, which is working on beanless coffee, no ideas are off limits for Seattle entrepreneurs looking to make a name for themselves.
Seattle’s booming tech economy is also bringing in millennial masses on their electric unicycles. People between the ages of 25 and 39 make up nearly a third of Seattle’s current population, and 16.2 percent of them have arrived within the last five years. With more tech news coming in by the day—Salesforce's recent acquisition of Seattle-based software company Tableau, Apple’s announcement to add more than 2,000 employees to its upcoming office space in South Lake Union, and Expedia’s forthcoming HQ in Interbay—Seattle’s tech empire is about to get even bigger. Unless we formulate a better plan soon, its attending issues—income inequality, housing shortages, homelessness—will grow with it.