The 12-county Dayton region won commitments to create 3,880 new jobs in 2018, while current companies committed to protecting 13,363 existing jobs, according to Jeff Hoagland, president and chief executive of the Dayton Development Coalition.
That’s a bit stronger than the 2,078 new job commitments won in 2017 and the more than 10,200 jobs retained that year.
“Dayton has stayed strong in a lot of our key areas,” Hoagland told a a breakfast meeting of the I-70/75 Development Association Friday at Sinclair Community College. “I think we’ve diversified a little bit.”
The commitments entail expected capital investments across 36 projects totaling nearly $855 million in 2018, a bit less than the nearly $950 million in capital won in 2017, according to coalition and JobsOhio numbers Hoagland presented.
Hoagland focused on a coalition priority, pointing to new jobs in and around Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, one of the world’s biggest Air Force bases and the state’s largest single-site employer with nearly 30,000 military and civilian employees.
The base won the F-35 fighter jet sustainment program last year, which will pull 400-plus jobs from the Washington, D.C. area to the region.
That project in particular holds the promise of more jobs to come, Hoagland said.
“It’s going to be here a long time,” he said. “This is going to be a 50-, 60-year program. A lot more jobs will follow this.”
Wright-Patterson was in competition with Hill Air Force Base and other Air Force installations for that program, the coalition leader said.
The base also won last year a $182 million expansion for NASIC, the National Air and Space Intelligence Center. NASIC itself has grown by 100 jobs a year for the past 15 years, the CEO said.
In partnership with JobsOhio, the state’s private, non-profit development corporation, the region has won nearly 22,500 jobs from 2012 to 2018, while helping to project 69,371 existing jobs, according to the coalition.
That represents 206 regional projects in those years.
Looking ahead until 2023, the coalition is projecting three percent growth in Dayton-area logistics jobs, and four percent growth each in jobs tied to the aerospace and data management sectors.
In the bio-sciences, which offers average annual salaries of nearly $59,000, the coalition is projecting job growth of 12 percent.
In Vandalia, AxoGen Inc., of Alachua, Fla., last summer bought a building at 913 Industrial Park for $5 million. That project is expected to create more than 220 new jobs.