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Vancouver-Seattle

The New York Times has an interesting article up talking about how Vancouver and Seattle are trying to more closely align themselves and create a unified tech corridor. 

BC premier Christy Clark and Washington governor Jay Inslee recently signed an agreement to that effect, which included more research collaboration between the University of British Columbia and the University of Washington.

Seattle wants this because its companies need talent (read: foreign workers) and Vancouver’s borders are more open. Vancouver wants this because its tech industry is relatively small (go Hootsuite!) and it could benefit greatly from being more proximal to Seattle.

On a side note, Seattle is an interesting case study. In terms of venture capital dollars invested, it is below top tier cities such as San Francisco, New York, Boston, and so on. But in terms of the companies it has birthed (Microsoft, Amazon, Zillow, Expedia…) it is certainly a heavy hitter.

One of the key factors will be physical connectivity. There’s talk of high speed rail and/or a dedicated lane for autonomous vehicles. However it’s done, I think bringing this trip to < 1 hour would be the ideal scenario. There’s a psychological barrier beyond that.

If any of you live/work in either of these cities today, I would be curious to hear your thoughts.

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