Jobs on the Rise: New Urban Developments Are Driving Employment Growth

Urban Developments/ Building smart cities, creating smart opportunities. See how integrated urban projects generate employment and foster innovation.

Cities worldwide, while diverse in demographics and culture, share a common pursuit of progress through new urban developments. These projects not only enhance convenience amid urban congestion but also stimulate local economies and communities through various socio-economic activities like job creation.

Whether in the form of public transportation, cutting-edge business districts, or towering residential communities, a single new urban development requires a whole host of jobs from pre-construction, to construction, and completion. These range from real estate developers and planners to construction workers and suppliers – all requiring extensive collaboration for successful project development.

Hudson Yards: Direct and indirect employment opportunities

urban development
Photo credit to Following NYC. Featuring ‘Vessel’, a honeycomb-like structure and visitor attraction in the Hudson Yards Development in Manhattan, New York City.

The cycle of job creation doesn’t stop after completion. New urban developments also drive indirect employment opportunities generated from industries attracted or related to the development.

Such is the case for Hudson Yards, New York City’s 28-acre mixed-use development and considerably the United States’ biggest megadevelopment in history. It had created thousands of construction jobs that resulted in transforming Manhattan’s iconic skyline and becoming home to diverse shops, offices, cultural institutions, and hotels and residences. Ongoing operations and management of these facilities are expected to contribute to its large-scale economy, such as hosting over 55,752 workers daily and about $19 billion annually to the city’s GDP.

Dubai and Songdo IBD: Creating economic opportunities afresh

Meanwhile, cities like Dubai and Songdo International Business District (IBD) generate jobs by creating economic opportunities from the ground up. They used land reclamation as an urban development strategy to address land scarcity and high population density challenges.


urban development
Photo credit to Kadir Avşar. A closer aerial view of the Palm Islands.

Dubai’s ambitious projects, including the Palm Islands, the World Islands, and Burj Al Arab, have turned it into an ultramodern metropolis for commerce and tourism. In 2023, it drew over 30,000 new businesses, driving demand for talent in finance, legal, and digital technology sectors.

 The Songdo IBD is an ongoing smart city built on reclaimed land in Incheon, South Korea. It’s designed to be an international business and residential hub with sustainable features. As of 2020, the 1,500-acre development hosts about 30,000 residents, 33,000 jobs, and 70% fewer emissions than any other development.

SM’s Integrated City Developments: Empowering local communities and residents

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SM Prime contributed photo. An aerial view of SM Mall of Asia (MOA) featuring its iconic Globamaze and thriving network of retail, business, residential, and hotel developments.

The SM Group, a leading conglomerate in the Philippines, has an ecosystem of interests spanning retail, banking, property, and mall developments across the country, making it the largest employer with over 140,000 employees.

For every SM mall development by SM Prime Holdings, the integrated property developer of the Group, the local economy is invigorated because of the opportunities created by supporting small and medium enterprises (SMEs) that comprise about 68% of its mall tenants.

For instance, SM City Bataan, SM Supermalls’ 83rd mall, employs about 96% of its mall administration staff who are residents called Bataeños, including two in leadership roles. It also proudly showcases local industries by partnering with homegrown businesses like family-owned brands and locally managed franchises.

Job security, stable income, and tax revenues contribute to the local workforce’s quality of life; and SM Prime ensures to manifest these waves of progress in its developments, especially in its future plans for smart cities in the Philippines to be spearheaded by its ongoing 360-hectare development in Pasay City.

New urban developments are catalysts for growth, innovation, and avenues for increased prosperity, shaping local economies through job creation and improved lives. The success of these city centers requires a network of opportunities – from its pre-construction supply chain to empowering businesses for individuals to thrive and contribute to the communities.

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  1. One of my college roommates eventually received a master’s in urban planning, and this is so intriguing to me. I think it is fabulous that new urban developments add so much employment growth in places like the Hudson Yards!

  2. Great article, Ramil! It’s fascinating to see how urban developments drive employment growth and shape communities. The examples of Hudson Yards, Dubai, and Songdo IBD showcase the diverse strategies cities employ to create economic opportunities. Looking forward to more insights on smart cities!

  3. The rise of opportunities in these dynamic spaces not only fuels economic progress but also creates a ripple effect of prosperity within communities. Witnessing the synergy between urban expansion and employment growth showcases the transformative power of strategic development initiatives in shaping vibrant, thriving cities for the future.

  4. It’s incredible to see how new developments are giving jobs to so many people. Jobs by the people, for the people.

  5. Cities are the lifeblood of the world for commerce, culture and creativity. Although I hate Hudson Yards (forgive me!), I understand its importance in NYC. The photo of the Palm Islands was amazing! I had no idea this development existed, but no surprise that it’s in Dubai, a city that is definitely way above the curve in terms of building projects

  6. Urban development is such a gigantic job creator and impact on the economy. Of course, you need workers to build, but you also need everything else that goes into that project.

    1. Agree with you, Beth. The people in the community will ultimately benefit from this. So, this is 1 win-win project for all.

  7. It’s impressive to see how cities like Dubai and Songdo IBD are creating opportunities from the ground up, while SM Prime Holdings is empowering local communities through its mall developments. It’s also inspiring to see how these urban centres are shaping local economies and improving people’s lives.

  8. During a time where I often hear about economic depression, this post is refreshing and encouraging. This information if wonderful for anyone looking for urban opportunities!

  9. Amazing there are new jobs as many people are looking to get hired. It’s always nice to know there is good employment growth.

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