News Release

Gardner Institute Releases First-of-its-Kind Analysis of Utah’s Economic Regions

November 19, 2020 (Salt Lake City) – The Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute today released a first-of-its-kind analysis of Utah’s economic regions, which capture local commuting patterns and score well for other measures of economic connection across the state. The report identifies six of these economic regions in Utah: Greater Salt Lake, Uintah Basin, West Central, East Central, Southwest, and Southeast.

“Economic activity does not naturally respect political boundaries,” said Natalie Gochnour, director of the Gardner Institute. “The best example of this is the county boundary that separates Salt Lake and Utah counties. Workers, customers, and suppliers flow seamlessly across these county lines forming a single economic region.”

Key findings from the report include the following:

Six economic regions – The Utah economy organizes functionally into six economic areas that bound much of the economic activity of residents. Decision-makers can use these economic regions to inform public and private investment, planning, and policy decisions.

Greater Salt Lake Area dominates – Utah’s northern metropolitan region casts a long ec