Regional Profile

The Knoxville region is centrally located within a day's drive of 70 percent of the U.S. markets, supported by a pro-business environment and talented workforce, driven by a diverse economy and has mild seasons and an abundance of natural beauty.

Only in East Tennessee will you find all three


        A National Laboratory                        A Major Research University                              A National Park


  • Junction of I-40, I-75, and I-81 
  • Major regional airport with 30 non-stop destinations 
  • Rail service: Norfolk Southern, CSX, and local short-line railroads 
  • Barge service: Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway System 
  • Gateway to the Great Smoky Mountains


  • Population of 1,241,721 in the 15-county region
  • Knoxville MSA population of 920,568
  • 58% of the population is ages 19-64
    Source: Lightcast, 2023


  • Workforce of over 580,000
  • Over 70,000 college and university students 
  • 50,000 technical professionals
  • Over 10,000 students concentrating in mathematics, science or engineering
  • 65,000 employed in manufacturing


  • University of Tennessee flagship campus 
  • 10 four-year colleges 
  • 4 two-year community colleges  
  • 4 Tennessee Colleges of Applied Technology 
  • Numerous vocational and specialty schools 


  • Oak Ridge National Laboratory
  • Oak Ridge Center for Manufacturing and Material Science 
  • Jaguar and Kraken Supercomputers
  • National Transportation Research Center
  • Spallation Neutron Source


  • Cost of living:       13% below the national average
  • Housing costs:      25% below the national average
  • Healthcare costs:   12% below the national average 
  • Great Smoky Mountains National Park 
  • Big South Fork Wilderness Area 
  • Seven TVA lakes, Tennessee River 
  • Two symphonies
  • Ballet company
  • Opera company
  • Fine arts museum
  • Nationally recognized zoo
  • Collegiate football and basketball
  • AA Chicago Cubs affiliate baseball team
  • Professional ice hockey team 

ETEDA Services

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  • Economic overview
  • Data/information
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  • Utility reports
  • Local employer interviews