With the latest U.S. Census data showing the Brevard County population close to hitting the 600,000 mark, the latest resurgence of the private space industry could not have come at a better time.
With wealthy elites like Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk on separate quests to explore outer space and hopefully other celestial bodies, their privately funded projects have spilled some good graces over to the Space Coast.
In June 2019, SpaceX, a company founded by Elon Musk, launched the Falcon Heavy from an old government launchpad in Cape Canaveral, Florida.
Nearby at Blue Origin, which was founded by Jeff Bezos, they also built a facility capable of building rockets that can withstand outer space campaigns.
The boost that these private enterprises have provided the Space Coast is astounding. From a long time economic slump which saw a 12 percent unemployment rate and low priced single family homes from 2007, Brevard County is only seeing improvements since the acquisition of these launchpads by private companies.
Real estate and economic experts well-versed in real estate modeling can all agree that across all fronts, the Space Coast is on an uptrend. Multiple developers have now begun constructing residential communities all over the county.
Titusville for one now has a new Hyatt and a new Marriott apart from an impressive 170-unit subdivision.
Titusville’s market value alone rose from $6.73 million in 2017 to $22.10 million in the last year, increasing its previous value by more than 100 percent.
The residential housing market is also improving, with soaring home prices contributed due to the decrease in residential real estate inventories.
The Space Coast Association of Realtors hopes that the current year will provide more inventory for single-family homes to help soften the prices currently in the market.
Economic developments have also reduced the unemployment rate to below 4 percent. With a lot of construction going on up and down the coastline, a lot of land development companies, real estate agencies, and privately owned small and medium businesses are looking to hire help to help revitalize the Space Coast.
While the area is still not losing its core, landmarks and structures of historic and cultural importance are now standing side by side with establishments commonly found everywhere else.
Sixteen minutes away from the Air Force Space and Missile Museum, Cape Canaveral is peppered with 7-Eleven convenience stores and Starbucks coffee shops nearby.
In other economic news, the Space Coast will soon be a frequent stop for cruise ships as Port Canaveral and Disney have reached a 20-year agreement to make Port Canaveral a homeport for the operation of the Disney Cruise Line. Disney Dream, one of the cruise ships in the cruise line’s current fleet, is able to house a maximum capacity of 4,000 passengers.
This will prove to be a big boost to the county’s economy, with at least 150 port calls to be made to Port Canaveral within the first 5 years of the contract.
While the Space County’s future looks promising, most of the county’s key stakeholders are keen to diversify their economy to prevent the collapse that happened following the retirement of space exploration activity following the Apollo era.