If you’ve traveled in the Puget Sound area, and haven’t explored the beautiful countryside in Skagit County, now is the time. Tucked away in the upper northwest corner of Washington State, Skagit County has been an agricultural paradise known for its tulips, potatoes, berries, and corn. The county was originally settled in 1883 and is named for the Skagit Indian tribe. The Skagit tribe is indigenous to the area, having established a home here before the European-American settlement over 125 years ago.
In the most recent national census report for Skagit County in 2010, an estimated 116,901 residents called the county home. That is a 13.5% increase from the census in the year 2000 and shows a 90% increase over the last 40 years. The area is growing economically, and shows no sign of slowing down anytime in the foreseeable future. The county continues to enjoy a vibrant business community and low unemployment.
Economic Forecast Is Positive
With a steady forecast for the economy, businesses are continually moving into the area. Recent additions include the advanced manufacturing and transportation industries and legacy businesses in the maritime industry. The county boasts an educated and skilled workforce, and a positive development partnership with the Economic Development Alliance of Skagit County to continue developing the area for continued business success. Advancements in specialized industries include aerospace and advanced composites, precision tooling, commercial construction, architecture and engineering services. Products made in Skagit County can be found in commercial and military airplanes, NASA space exploration vehicles, naval research vessels, champion racing yachts, and outdoor recreational gear and boats.
The county plays host to a variety of industries including:
- Advanced Manufacturing
- Clean Technology
- Environment and Natural Resource Management
- Tourism and Arts
- Military and Defense
If you’ve been looking for a new location for your business or a new opportunity to grow your career, Skagit County has everything you’re looking for. Beyond business opportunities, Skagit County offers scenery at the base of the Cascade Mountain range that you won’t find anywhere else. The county has National Forest and National Parks that host year-round family outdoor fun. It has one of the largest wild Chinook salmon runs in Puget Sound, and is the only river in Washington State (and one of only a few in the United States) that supports all five species of native salmon. Whatever your favorite outdoor activity Skagit County has it available.
World Class Schools and Education
Beyond outdoor excitement, Skagit County has an elite education system and workforce training to develop regional and state-wide renowned industrial workforce. Skagit Valley College is based in Mount Vernon and Oak Harbor and offers 2-year degrees in 25 fields with an additional 30 professional/technical certificate programs.
These programs and fields are designed for the regional employers in advanced manufacturing, agriculture, environmental sciences, nursing, and other high-demand fields located within Skagit County. The college also offers a 4-year degree program for applied science in environmental conservation meant to prepare students for high-demand environmental sciences and natural resource management.
How To Get To Skagit County
If you’re ready to check out Skagit County for its rich economy, enviable natural resources, and influential heritage, there are a few ways to get here:
- By Car – Interstate 5 runs north-south from Canada to Mexico, which makes it easy to find from anywhere on the West Coast. State Highway 20 travels Skagit County from west to east, and from April through October it offers access to central and eastern Washington State via the North Cascades Highway.
- By Train – Burlington Northern-Santa Fe Railroad (BNSF) offers cargo transportation that runs north-south through Mount Vernon and Burlington or Sedro-Woolley and east-west between Burlington and March Point in Anacortes. Amtrak offers passenger service and stops at Skagit Station in Mount Vernon.
- By Ferry – Anacortes is the last stop for the Washington State Ferries route serving the San Juan Islands (San Juan, Orcas, Lopez, and Shaw Islands) and Sidney, British Columbia (Victoria, Canada). Take a scenic ferry along the shoreline and see a view of Skagit County that can only be seen from the water.
- By Bus – Skagit Transit offers bus service within Skagit County and has an express commuter service to Bellingham and Everett. From Everett you can continue on to the Seattle metro area.
- By airplane – Skagit Regional Airport, Anacortes Airport, and Concrete Airport feature runways that offer length for commercial and private airplanes. San Juan Airlines offers daily commercial flights to the San Juan Islands also. In you’re coming from farther away, you may need to take a large commercial aircraft to get to one of the closer four international airports: Bellingham International Airport (located 30 miles away, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (located 75 miles away), Vancouver International Airport (located 75 miles away), or Victoria International Airport (located 62 miles away and accessible via the Anacortes-Sidney Ferry)
- By Sea – The Port of Anacortes offers a large marina for private use and also hosts major shipbuilding and repair facilities.
Skagit County is always looking for the best and brightest talent for employment opportunities. If you want to support your local community, while building a career, check out the latest open job opportunities within Skagit County government.