Located southwest of Duval, Clay County continues to make waves due to its remarkable population surge, industrial expansion and growing job market. The county’s allure attracts both new residents and businesses as jobs and capital investment tie into the region’s strategic connectivity to the world.
The latest reports from USAFacts.com and BestPlaces.net show an 18.4% increase in population since 2010, with the current population reaching beyond 220,000 residents. This surge can be linked to the growing job market, recording a 2.7% growth in the past year and future predictions suggest a promising 46.1% job growth over the next decade.
The future job surge benefits from the announcement earlier this year when IKO Industries, a global powerhouse in roofing, waterproofing and insulation, set a $270 million investment in the IKO manufacturing campus in Middleburg – the 300,000-square-foot facility will employ 100 local residents, with plans underway for the first of three production lines to be operational and ship high-quality roofing products by the end of 2025.
Job growth has been further amplified by the recent award of $3.5 million to the Clay County Board of County Commissioners through the Governor’s Florida Job Growth Grant Fund. These infrastructure improvements will directly support job growth in the manufacturing sector, creating approximately 170 new high-wage jobs upon completion.
As Clay County prepares its infrastructure for growth, the completion of the First Coast Expressway is a critical initiative for transportation and business growth. The successful completion of the Duval County expressway segment in 2019 marked a significant milestone while the ongoing construction of the expressway’s third phase, connecting Clay County and St. Johns County, is expected to be completed by 2030. The $1.9 billion investment in the First Coast Expressway and the collaborative efforts with local companies, such as the Clay County Utility Authority, Clay Electric, Florida Power & Light Co., TECO Gas and AT&T promises new pathways for connectivity and regional development in Clay County.
The area also benefits from a strong military presence. Naval Air Station Jacksonville is the largest installation in Navy Region Southeast and several of those that have served there during their military careers choose to make the First Coast their home as they complete their service.
With an influx of companies and job growth, along with the buildout of a world-class infrastructure, Clay County provides a tremendous environment for companies and careers and is a hotspot for growth in the Jacksonville region.