Press Kit

Mt Washington Valley - A model for Rural Rennaissance

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Marti Mayne, (207)846-6331 or


North Conway, NH - The results of phase II in an ongoing economic impact study for the Mt. Washington Valley have shown that this region of New Hampshire offers a model for rural community success. The study shows among other things, the Mt. Washington Valley has the fastest growing population (on a percentage basis) than any other region of New Hampshire, and that this region offers an excellent example of "rural renaissance" bucking the trend of other rural communities in "upscaling and upskilling" its population. The recently revealed study, entitled "Mt. Washington Valley's Regional Contribution to the Growing NH Economy" combined with phase I, demonstrate that the Mt. Washington Valley and Carroll County regions are characterized not only by faster population growth than any other county in New Hampshire during the 1990's, but also the highest percentage of entrepreneurs (and growing faster) than any county in New Hampshire. According to the study, the Mt. Washington Valley region underwent a significant increase in the quantity and quality of the population it attracted between 1990 and 2000. This explains why the Mt. Washington Valley's economy has grown faster than the overall New Hampshire economy, adding to its list of accomplishments throughout the last decade. Supported by a generous grant from Public Service of New Hampshire, the study was compiled from publicly available data by Brian Gottlob of PolEcon Research over the past two years.

One of many analyses in the Mt. Washington Valley's economic impact study reports the total economic contribution of Mt. Washington Valley and Carroll County's private sector on New Hampshire's economy is $1.55 billion in sales, with over 23,870 jobs, and $629 million in wages, salary and proprietor income. Businesses in Carroll County's private sector produced a total of $1.77 billion in goods and services. The Mt. Washington Valley produces $49.4 million ($1,133 per capita) in state general fund revenue, while receiving $39.3 million ($891 per capta) in general fund expenditures, showing that the Valley is contributing more to the betterment of the state than it is receiving, and once again serving as a model rural community for New Hampshire. According to Polecon's research, the Mt. Washington Valley is experiencing the kind of growth once only associated with communities in Southern New Hampshire. It shows that rural areas can take advantage of their natural and recreational amenities to improve the economic, demographic and social characteristics of the region. Clearly, the beauty, outdoor recreation and growth in the economy have served to attract an increasingly upscale and entrepreneurial population to Mt. Washington Valley. According to Polecon's economic impact study, "Carroll County began the 1990's with less than one-third of one percent of its wage and salary employment in high tech industries. By the end of 2002, high tech employment had increased to well over three percent of all jobs in the county, ranking it the third highest among all New Hampshire counties for high tech employment".

The executive summary of Mt. Washington Valley's Economic Impact Study summaraizes beautifully the contribution this region is making locally, and to the state as a whole. It reads, "As America becomes more urban, the resources that rural areas offer, like open space, natural amenities, small town values, become more valuable. Anyone interested in enhancing the economic and demographic characteristics of NH's rural areas should conclude that doing so can involve different approaches to those that have contributed to the success of Southern New Hampshire. They should also look to the Mt. Washington Valley as an example of how rural areas in New Hampshire and elsewhere can prosper."

For additional copies of the Mt. Washington Valley Economic Impact Study entitled "North Country Know How: A Model for Rural Community Success" please contact the Mt. Washington Valley Chamber of Commerce at 603-356-5701. We encourage all those interested to delve into this study to learn how one New Hampshire North Country region has created a "rural renaissance" turning a combination of favorable demographic trends, a strong mix of amenities, and a high quality of life into population and employment growth rates that exceed that of rural counties both in New Hampshire and in the United States.