Black Diamond is an anomaly. While there is virtually nothing supporting the local economy, residents earn incomes well above the national average. The reason for this is largely because the local residents are able to commute to neighboring cities such as Seattle, Renton, and other suburban centers. Black Diamond has become the archetypical commuter community.
Thanks to Black Diamond’s small size, it attracts a lot of successful big city dwellers who have had enough of the rat race and are looking to relax and take things a little more slowly. Though not quite rural, Black Diamond is one of the smallest cities in the Seattle Metropolitan Area. And yet, it is also one of the most affluent cities in the area.
A few hundred miles to the east, there are dozens of cities just like Black Diamond that are not supported by a strong regional economy and, as result, suffer from a much lower per capita income. Really, you could say that Black Diamond was just a stroke of luck. In the late 1880s, the regional economy didn’t play such a large role in the success of the locals. A mining operation sold coal to cities as far off in San Francisco and a higher per capita income was expected. Now, the town could be without a single local business and residents would still thrive.
In fact, if this city hadn’t been incorporated in 1959, one could argue that black diamond is merely a neighborhood of one of its nearby neighbors. The same could be said for a number of other cities in the region. Thanks to the thriving Seattle metropolitan area, all of the cities can enjoy high incomes, strong local economies, and residents can enjoy an exceptionally high quality of life. Black Diamond truly represents the American dream.
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