While Huntsville is primarily in Madison County, Alabama, the city also extends into Limestone County. With a population of 180,105, Huntsville is the fourth-largest city in the state. When counting the metropolitan area around Huntsville, the population swells to 435,737 and it becomes the second largest metropolitan area in the state. The city is well known for its United States Space Camp, where children and adults can learn more about engineering, science, aviation, and space exploration, and the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, which showcases artifacts, rockets, and achievements from the space program.
In Huntsville, the cost of living is around 5.1 percent lower than state average, and about 12.3 percent lower than the national average. This means that residents living in Huntsville enjoy groceries, goods, services, transportation, health care, and housing that are all below average costs in the United States. As an example, the price of pizza in Huntsville is $8.00, which is 13.9 percent lower than the national average. The average price of a cup of coffee is $3.99, which is 5.8 percent lower than the average price in the country. Plus, the average price of gas is $3.07, which is 5.7 percent lower.
Huntsville Job Opportunities
The majority of jobs in Huntsville, AL come from military and aerospace technology. In fact, many job seekers find military jobs with the United States Army and Redstone Arsenal because this is the area's largest employer, with around 31,500 workers. The NASA Marshall Space Flight Center and The Boeing Company are also large employers for Huntsville jobs, with 6,000 and 2,600 employees, respectively.
Additionally, the Huntsville Hospital System employs around 7,130 people, Huntsville City Schools have about 3,080 workers and Madison County Schools have around 2,390 employees. Other major employers for jobs in Huntsville include SAIC, ADTRAN, Inc., CINRAM, Inc., Dynetics, Qualitest and Intergraph Corporation.
However, anyone finding it difficult to find Huntsville jobs can also look for jobs in Decatur, AL. This city is home to 25 manufacturing companies, 14 Fortune 500 companies and over 154 different industries.
Huntsville Employment Trends
The unemployment rate in Huntsville in July 2014 was 6.9 percent. This is just slightly under the state of Alabama at 7 percent, and just slightly over the national unemployment rate of 6.3. Growth for Huntsville, AL jobs is around 1.5 percent. This is why Forbes once put Huntsville in the top ten for the best places around the country for business and careers.