September 14, 1998 Vol. III, No. 1

Report Details Recovering San Fernando Valley Economy

Local Entertainment Industry Jobs Help Revival After Recession and Earthquake

Led by a burgeoning entertainment industry in the region, the San Fernando Valley's economy is showing definite signs of recovery after weathering the recession of the early 1990s and the 1994 earthquake, according to a new report by Cal State Northridge researchers.

The 63-page report by the university's San Fernando Valley Economic Research Center, two years in preparation, paints a vivid picture of the valley's economic mosaic, drawing together for the first time such a comprehensive array of economic and other statistical data on the region.

"The center's carefully compiled data helps us better understand the Valley economy in all of its facets, and perhaps most importantly, the center's research helps our region plan strategically and wisely for the future," said CSUN President Blenda J. Wilson in releasing the report.

Dean William Hosek of CSUN's College of Business Administration and Economics, which houses the research center headed by director and economics professor Shirley Svorny, called the study "the first specific endeavor to isolate measurements about the Valley as a distinct areaŠ."

As the report explains, gathering consistent, meaningful information about the San Fernando Valley-with an estimated 1.63 million inhabitants spread over 286 square miles-has been a struggle in the past because the region does not conform to any unified jurisdictional boundaries.

"My hope is that the center becomes a resource for business people, people interested in public policy and for nonprofit agencies that serve the San Fernando Valley," said Svorny. "There haven't been very many people who have tried to put together data on the Valley before."

In detailing the economic and demographic life of the Valley, Svorny's report often bases its analyses on a so-called "Six-City Valley," including Los Angeles City north of Mulholland Drive, Burbank, Calabasas, Glendale, Hidden Hills and San Fernando, plus the added area of Universal City.

Some of the report's findings include:

Within Los Angeles City, the Valley also remained safer than the broader city, with the Valley suffering 16 percent of its total homicides but having about one-third of the city's population.

-John Chandler

September 14, 1998

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