At the Beltway and Fairmont sits some of the nation's top performing retail space. Pasadena has outgrown an outdated image that the city's mayor remembers.
"Redneck, refinery worker, everything that was idolized in the 'Urban Cowboy,'" said Pasadena Mayor Johnny Isbell.
The energy image remains and is behind much of the modernizing and growth today, spurring new commercial construction and a growing medical complex on the south side of the city. And it got the attention of a financial times magazine study.
"In the best of the small cities category in the overall it was number four. Five of them were Canadian cities," said Lou Ann Nolan with the Pasadena Economic Development Office.
"We are honored to have Pasadena recognized as one of the leading cities of the future," the mayor said. "Our city is committed to embracing business development and improving the quality of life for our residents."
Pasadena was the only small city in Texas to win a ranking, but it's about to grow even more. New companies are looking to relocate here, representing a $4 billion potential -- enough that there's a huge wave of hiring projected in the next five years.
"The construction jobs required will be 11,000 to produce the $35 billion in expansion projects we have right now in the chemical industry," said Chad Burke with the Houston Port Economic Alliance.
Pasadena was judged against 422 cities across North and South America from data collected by fDi Magazine. The city was in the Small Cities category, which includes cities with a population base between 100,000 - 350,000.
We should also mention that Houston took top honors in the overall category among major American cities.
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