Charting the evolution of Baton Rouge’s key business sectors as Business Report turns 35

The Baton Rouge landscape has changed dramatically since 1982 when the first issue of Business Report hit the newsstands and desks of corporate executives. While our economy is still largely driven by the petrochemical industry and public sector, changes in public education have forever altered the Capital Region—where we live and the geography of where we do business.

With Business Report celebrating its 35th anniversary, the current cover story focuses on the Capital Region’s key business sectors and editor Stephanie Riegel tracks how each has evolved over the past three-plus decades. There’s also a guest column by economist Loren Scott, who writes how the local economy has changed since 1982, and the issue also examines the tremendous suburban growth that’s taken place. And, of course, no look back at Baton Rouge would be complete without exploring the nightmare that is our traffic.

Loren Scott: Baton Rouge economy has come a long way since 1982

Road rage: Baton Rouge traffic continues to be an unsolvable nightmare

Oil and Gas: South Louisiana’s bedrock industry is defined by boom-bust cycles

Banking: Mergers, acquisitions and the rise of the community bank

Health Care: The ongoing quest to make medicine an economic development catalyst in Baton Rouge

Baton Rouge Port: Returning to relevance through diversification and investment

Gaming: Bet pays off in Baton Rouge, despite the controversies

Education: The evolution of public education has radically changed the Capital Region landscape

Restaurants: Baton Rouge culinary scene has grown and diversified over past 35 years

Retail: Merchants are following the march of people and money

Downtown: Rising from the decay of neglect

Planning: Coming up with plans isn’t a problem … following them can often be a challenge

Real Estate: Booms and busts, yes, but always continual expansion

Suburban Growth: Families and businesses moving into fast growing Ascension and Livingston parishes


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