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Portsmouth boasts 90 miles of shoreline, and 360 degrees of opportunity. The City’s landscape is surrounded by water and has attracted the industrial maritime industry and related trades for three centuries. The U.S. Navy’s oldest and largest industrial facility – the Norfolk Naval Shipyard – has spurred many private-sector business opportunities in ship repair. The Port of Virginia operates two terminals in Portsmouth – Portsmouth Marine Terminals (PMT) and the Virginia International Gateway (VIG). Economic development tools like the state-designated Enterprise Zone program and locally-funded incentives attract new businesses to Portsmouth, as well as encourage the growth of existing industries.

Economic Area Population 
Portsmouth 96,024
Virginia 8,410,175
United States 319,857,056

Economic Modeling Specialists International (EMSI), 2015

Percent of Population by Age Group
Age Range Percent of Population
Under 18 23.20%
18-34 24.90%
35-54 24.50%
55+ 27.50%
Median Age 36
Male 48%
Female 52%

Esri Business Analyst Online 2015 Detailed Age Profile

Median Household Income
Year Amount
2015 $ 41,686
2020 Forecast $ 47,388

Esri Business Analyst Online, 2015 forecast

Educational Attainment Ages 25+
​Portsmouth Percent
At Least a High School Diploma 84.10%
At Least Some College 54.40%
Bachelor's Degree or Higher 20.70%
United States  
At Least a High School Diploma 87.80%
At Least Some College 61.10%
Bachelor's Degree or Higher 30.50%

Esri Business Analyst Online 2015 Market Profile

Labor Force
Civilian Labor Force 44,175
Employed 41,609
Unemployed 2,566
Unemployment Rate 5.8%

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, April 2016

Largest Employment by Industry Sector
Industry Number of Employees Percent of Workforce
Government 18,223 43.00%
Health and Social Assistance 7,076 16.68%
Retail Trade 3,302 7.78%
Administrative Support 2,499 5.89%
Construction 2,391 5.64%
Accommodation and Food Services 2,147 5.06%

Virginia Employment Commission, 2015

Largest Private Employers
Bon Secours/Maryview Medical Center
Ceres Marine Terminals
Fairlead Integrated
Marine Specialty Painting
NSC Technologies
Contact Information
Ms. Mallory C. Butler, Director
City of Portsmouth Department of Economic Development
801 Crawford St., 5th Floor
Portsmouth, VA 23704
(P) 757.393.8804
(F) 757-393-8293
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