Building a cohesive targeted economic development strategy for Arlington involves taking into account the City Council’s priorities, values and vision, the existing industry base, regional resources and assets, the area’s economic trends, and forecasted industry trends. All of these pieces are needed to build a clear roadmap to specific opportunities that hold the greatest promise for success. Based upon this analysis, the City of Arlington has identified the following targeted industries as its primary focus in furthering local economic development efforts:


It is no wonder why Arlington is quickly becoming a regional center for aerospace R&D…

  • Arlington enjoys a strategic positioning within the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex; home to the state’s largest concentration of aerospace manufacturing workers, one of the county’s largest airports, headquarters of American and Southwest Airlines, and regional operations of leading aerospace companies including Lockheed Martin, Bell Helicopter, Raytheon, and Boeing.
  • UT Arlington’s Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department conducts leading-edge research in aerodynamics and detonation engines; alternative fuels; wireless sensors; rotorcraft; unmanned air vehicles; and thermo-mechanical characterization of very high temperature materials and advanced composites. In addition, the UT Arlington Research Institute (UTARI) conducts research and facilitates early-stage product development in advanced manufacturing and robotics.
  • Served by Union Pacific Railroad, Arlington is located directly to the east of Southern California ports, making it well positioned to support movement of aerospace products and services to high-growth markets in Asia.
  • The Arlington Municipal Airport is a full-service “reliever” airport that is owned and operated by the City of Arlington. The airport encompasses 500 acres and serves as home to over 300 aircrafts. Runway 16/34 is 6,080 ft. x 100 ft. with medium intensity lighting and a full parallel taxiway.



Fueled by its low-cost, business friendly environment, logistics assets, and proximity to Mexico, Arlington has long been a strategic home to leaders of the automotive industry.

  • The 4.375 million sq. ft. General Motors Arlington Assembly Plant has been building world class vehicles in Texas since 1954 and now is the only GM facility in the world to produce and export GM’s portfolio of full-size sport utility vehicles.
  • Arlington is benefited by a complimentary business base which offers critical elements of the automotive supply chain, including metal fabrication, electronic components, glass and plastics production, and increasingly high technology and software development.
  • Arlington is positioned on a strategic supply route to a large and growing production environment in Mexico and a production supply chain in Texas as well as the southeastern U.S. The city’s access by truck to northern Mexico and key Midwest supply chains, coupled with access to several Gulf Coast ports for exports, provide Arlington with strong competitive advantage.
  • Thanks to the long history of automotive manufacturing in Arlington and the DFW region, Arlington has a skilled workforce, ready for future automotive developments.


Professional and Business Services

As the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex’s third largest principal city, Arlington’s location, access, and visibility make it a prime destination for business and professional services.

  • Home to the Dallas Cowboys, Texas Rangers, Six Flags Amusement Park, affordable luxury housing, and quality education, Arlington’s quality of life makes it an ideal place for a company’s employees to live.
  • Located in the center of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, Arlington is an easy commute from Dallas, Fort Worth, and surrounding suburbs – providing access to a civilian labor force of over 3.4 million.
  • With an enrollment of over 42,496 students, the University of Texas-Arlington, renowned for its high-quality and affordable education, attributes to Arlington’s skilled local workforce. The University is well known for its excellence in Business, Computer Science, and Engineering.
  • Just minutes from DFW International Airport and home to the Arlington Municipal Airport, Arlington provides businesses with unrivaled transportation access.

Medical Devices

Now home to over 800 firms, Texas emerged as a major force in medical device manufacturing in the 1990s and is one of the top ten states in the United States for medical device workers. Arlington’s strategic positioning in the state makes it an ideal location for medical device manufacturing and distribution.Medical

  • Arlington’s interstate highway access, railroad access, and proximity to DFW airport expedite the delivery of medical equipment.
  • University of Texas-Arlington, along with other nearby institutions, UNT Health Science Center and UT Southwestern Medical Center, rank among the nation’s top 100 medical schools by US News & World Report.
  • As the largest exporting state in the US with exports in excess of $2.3 billion in 2012, Texas is ideally suited to for medical devices, and, within the state, Arlington, offers proximity to both domestic markets and the state’s export infrastructure.

Industrial Machinery

Home to automotive manufacturing and plastics, Arlington is interconnected with several key industries that support industrial machinery.

  • With highway access to I-30 and the I-20 corridor and rail access along the Union Pacific Railroad, Arlington is well positioned to serve both the inbound and outbound supply chains for this industry.
  • Arlington can serve Midwest OEMs and suppliers by a two day truck dray and OEMs and suppliers in the Southeast and Texas with a one day dray.
  • Arlington’s proximity to the Port of Houston and other South Texas ports provide a regional advantage for export.
  • 68% of the Greater Southwest Industrial District, a master planned logistics park and OED targeted reinvestment area, is zoned for industrial manufacturing.
  • University of Texas-Arlington School of Engineering’s Department of Industrial, Manufacturing, & Systems Engineering offers undergraduate, masters, and doctorate programs to support local industrial manufacturing.