Experts: Things are Looking Good for B-CS

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COLLEGE STATION, Texas Business leaders from across the Bryan-College Station area gathered at the Hilton College Station Wednesday to hear news about the future of the area.

The news is good, according to any one of the several speakers at the B-CS Chamber of Commerce Economic Outlook Conference.

"Oh, we're looking real good," said Jim Gaines, a research economist with the Texas A&M University Research Center.

Gaines was one of the speakers at the event. He said when it comes to things like the housing market and job numbers, 2013 was a great year. On average, homes sold for more money and spent less time on the market than in years past.

Gaines said 2014 has lots of potential for the area.

"This is a great place to live. We are located centrally to the growth corridors in the state. The I-45, I-35, I-10 triangle between Dallas, Houston and San Antonio," said Gaines.

Meanwhile, the population of both cities continues to grow. College Station is just under 100,000 people, while Bryan is around 80,000. By 2020, College Station is expected to reach about 113,000, and Bryan predicts they'll be at just over 100,000. By 2030, College Station officials said the city will likely reach 134,000, and Bryan should be up to around 120,000.

ESPN's SEC Network, to be introduced later this year, is also predicted to be a boost for the local economy every time ESPN crews roll into town.

"When ESPN comes to town, it brings with it a whole bunch of folks that sleep locally, produce the content locally," said Justin Conolly with ESPN. "And we're going to bring ESPN to town more frequently now that there's a network that represents everything that's great with the SEC."

Texas Department of Transportation officials said they're working hard to keep up with the growing needs of the city.