Location, quality of life and a pro-business environment are three of the reasons more than 10,000 companies call Howard County home, creating upwards of 170,000 jobs. The county has more than 70 million square feet of office, industrial and flex space, according to the Howard County Economic Development Authority.
Howard County is among the wealthiest jurisdictions in the nation with a median household income of $117,730. A little more than one-quarter of county residents commute to Washington, about 20 miles south, while about a third commute to Baltimore, 10 miles northeast. Many local companies recruit workers from both metropolitan areas, which, combined, form the fourth-largest business market in the United States.
Industries in the county include professional business and scientific services, information technology, advanced manufacturing and health care services, according to the economic development authority.
The Port of Baltimore is 20 minutes from the county seat, and BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport is even closer.
Howard County Economic Development Authority: 410-313-6500, hceda.org
Howard County Chamber of Commerce: 410-730-4111, howardchamber.com
BWI Business Partnership: 410-859-1000, bwipartner.org
Baltimore Metropolitan Council: 410-732-0500, baltometro.org
Maryland Governor’s Office of Small, Minority and Women Business Affairs: 410-697-9600, goma.maryland.gov
Maryland Small Business Development Center: 301-403-8300, marylandsbdc.org
Howard County business at a glance
Private businesses: 9,985
- Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory: 7,200 employees
- Howard County General Hospital: 1,765 employees
- Verizon: 1,700 employees
- Howard Community College: 1,410 employees
- Lorien Health Systems: 1,190 employees
- Columbia Association: 1,180 employees
- Coastal Sunbelt Produce: 1,050 employees
Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and Maryland Department of Commerce
*Excludes post offices, state and local governments, national retail and national food service; includes higher education