Galveston Bay Area Economic Base
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The primary objectives of this study are to examine the recent history of the Galveston Bay Area (GBA) and to analyze the Area's growth prospects for the next fifty years. As defined here, the GBA consists of eight Texas counties covering an area of approximately 7,800 square miles and lying along the Texas Coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Located at the center of the Area, Harris County dominates the local economy and serves as a focal point for GBA social and economic activity. The other counties in the study area, bordering on Harris County, are Brazoria, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Liberty, Montgomery, and Waller. This Area increasingly is coming to be viewed as a single unit, as shown by the fact that is coterminous with the Houston-Galveston Area Council of Governments Region. This study is concerned mainly with the history of the GBA between 1940 and 1968, the period of its greatest economic growth. The local refining, chemical processing, and metals industries experienced their most rapid growth over this twenty-eight year span, and numerous other industries also were expanding rapidly. Since economic base theory will be used as the theoretical framework for the upcoming historical analysis, it is desirable to discuss this theory.