County Profile

Knoxville and Knox County are nationally recognized as prime places to locate and grow a business by leading economic development and business magazines and organizations.


Knoxville ranks among the nation’s best places to live, raise a family, and own a business. In 2019, it was ranked 14th “Least Expensive City” by Yahoo Finance and, in 2018, 49th “Best Bike Cities in America” by Bicycling magazine.

Cost of Living

Metropolitan Area

16.8% lower than the national average

Location and Climate

Founded in 1791 where the French Broad and Holston Rivers meet to form the Tennessee River, Knoxville is the largest city in East Tennessee. Its corporate limits comprise 104 of the 526-square mile total for Knox County. Knoxville is the urban heart of the metropolitan area, which consists of nine counties – Anderson, Blount, Campbell, Grainger, Knox, Loudon, Morgan, Roane, and Union. Knoxville is located in a valley between the Cumberland and Great Smoky Mountains. This location offers a moderate, four-season climate, with normal daytime temperatures of 88 degrees in July and 48 degrees in January. Downtown Knoxville is 936 feet above sea level.


Population (2018)


Median Single-Family Home
Sales Price (2019)

Median Monthly Rent (2017)

Residential Units (2018)

Knox County


New units added


Value of new construction


Commerce and Industry

Denso Manufacturing, Discovery Communications, Jewelry Television, Regal Entertainment Group, The Dollywood Company, Pilot Flying J, Clayton Homes, and Bush Brothers all call the Knoxville area home. The area also hosts Oak Ridge National Laboratory – the largest U.S. Department of Energy research facility and site of the world’s fastest supercomputer – employing 4,750 with an annual operating budget of $1.4 billion.

Knox County has eight business parks and a Technology Corridor. The area is marketed by The Development Corporation of Knox County and Knoxville-Oak Ridge Innovation Valley Inc., a regional economic development partnership.

Earnings (2018)

Knox County (all industries average)


Median Household Income (2017)

Employment (2019)
Labor Force

Unemployment Rate (2019)

Knox County Employment (2018)

All Industries Total


Note: Due to disclosure requirements, the sum of the individual category counts will not match the All Industries total.

Establishments (2018)

Retail Sales (2018)
Knox County

Total Sales


Sales Per Capita



Residential Propertyassessment 25% of appraised value
Taxes are levied on each $100 of assessed value
Commercial/Industrial Property assessment 40% of appraised value
Knox County Tax Rate $2.12 per $100 assessment
Knoxville Tax Rate
(Knoxville property owners pay both city and county taxes)
$2.4638 per $100 assessment
State Sales Tax Rate4% on food
7% on all other tangible personal property
Local Sales Tax Rate
(applicable countywide)
Total Sales Tax Rate in Knox County9.25%


Nearly half of the nation’s population is within a day’s drive of Knoxville via six Interstate Highways which transect the area.

Highway (2018)


40, 75, 81, 140, 275, and 640

Average Daily Trips (I-40/75 in Knox County)


Trucking Companies


Air (2018-19)

Five airlines fly to 21 non-stop destinations out of Knoxville’s McGhee Tyson Airport (TYS), located 12 miles from downtown.
Airlines Allegiant, American, Delta, Frontier, United
Daily Flights and Non-stop Destinations 99 flights/21 destinations
Passengers (annual) 2,221,137
Cargo Services and Freight 2 services/81,363,507 tons

Rail (2019)

Systems (Knox County)

CSX, Norfolk Southern, KXHR-Gulf & Ohio

Miles of Lines (Knox County)


Water (2018)

Cargo through Fort Loudon Lock

582,440 tons