Dallas nighttime skyline
Dallas City skyline at dusk, Texas, USA

A fast glimpse of one locale from our list of the top ecosystems

Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas

Dallas is stocked  with innovators — 90% of the business makeup is small businesses, sole proprietors and microbusinesses, according to a city press release. But the area also has its fair share of mega-companies such as AT&T, Exxon Mobil and American Airlines. It’s number three on our list for its low taxes, growth in entrepreneurship and the makeup of its labor pool. It ranked number one on Heartland Forward’s analysis of the quality of its labor pool, likely a combination of the strong university presence and the skilled labor required for the energy industry.

Events and Meetups:

Dallas Startup Week brings together thousands of entrepreneurs each spring to connect, speak and collaborate. There’s also EarthX, one of the largest environmental events in the world. It brings together people from private, public, academic and other settings, Dallas Innovates writes.  Dallas also has an active arts scene — it hosts the Dallas International Film Festival each year.

Restaurants and Gathering Places:

There’s Open Coffee Clubs, a group that meets at several different locations for a cup of coffee before work to collaborate and network. The Joule Hotel downtown Taschen bookstore is also where many entrepreneurs gather, Dallas Innovates reports. People also connect at Dallas Makerspace.

Outdoor Activities:

The Katy trail runs through the area, which is a perfect place to jog, bike, or just take a stroll. Other trail options include the Sante Fe Trail and the Big Cedar Wilderness Trail. You can also take a sailing trip on White Rock Lake, located in the northeast part of the city, or walk through the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden next to the lake.

This story and others on New Builders Dispatch are made possible by a sponsorship from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation is a private, nonpartisan foundation that provides access to opportunities that help people achieve financial stability, upward mobility, and economic prosperity – regardless of race, gender, or geography. The Kansas City, Mo.-based foundation uses its grantmaking, research, programs, and initiatives to support the start and growth of new businesses, a more prepared workforce, and stronger communities. For more information, visit www.kauffman.org and connect with www.twitter.com/kauffmanfdn and www.facebook.com/kauffmanfdn.

A business journalist for 20 years, am the founder of Times of Entrepreneurship and the co-author of The New Builders.