Southwest Louisiana is featured in the 2018 Louisiana Trade Guide as a prime area for foreign direct investment, as well as a great location for exporters.
In Southwest Louisiana you can enjoy a day of sun, sand, and surf on the coast of the “The Cajun Riviera,” or canoe the Ouiska Chitto River. You can hit the track or the casinos for Vegas-style gaming, visit museums with exhibits ranging from fine art to railroad history, and explore a re-created general store. Don’t leave without touring the Lake Charles Charpentier District, the architectural legacy of Michigan lumbermen who chopped down the trees here, then built their own distinct style of houses.
Allen Parish is diverse in culture and plentiful in natural resources and beauty, Allen Parish is where Cajun food and culture meet the timber-rich, piney woods of central Louisiana. Allen Parish is home to four Natural and Scenic Rivers, including the spring-fed Ouiska Chitto, which attracts canoeists and outdoor enthusiasts from all over the South. The Coushatta Tribe of Louisiana makes its home in Allen Parish and operates Louisiana’s premier land-based casino resort, Coushatta Casino & Resort and Koasati Pines Golf Course, its 18-hole championship course near Kinder. The gaming and hospitality industries, along with a plywood manufacturing facility, three prison facilities and a natural gas relay facility are the major private sector employers in the parish. Allen Parish has some of the most fertile farmland in the South, producing primarily rice and soybeans. The parish is served by two federal highway systems and extensive rail facilities.
Beauregard Parish is home to such industries as paper and plastics production, chemical production and insurance providers. The area is centered on one of the largest aquifers in the world. The 4,200-acre Beauregard Parish Airport has a 5,495-foot north-south runway. The airport, located just minutes away from major industry, boasts the largest land area in the state and one of the largest in the nation. US Hwy 171 and 190 provide transportation arteries. There are abundant opportunities for Nature lovers with its lakes, wildlife preserve and natural scenic beauty. Just north of the parish is Fort Polk, the state’s largest military installation and home to the Joint Readiness Training Center (JRTC).
Calcasieu Parish’s rich history combined with a modern, diversified economy and numerous recreational opportunities make this area a wonderful place to live and visit. The petrochemical industry is the mainstay economically for the parish, and the past decade has seen the aerospace and gaming industries broaden that base. The Port of Lake Charles is accessible to ocean-going vessels and is only 34 miles from the Gulf of Mexico, the closest of any deep-water port in Louisiana. Chennault International Airpark is a major feature for the area with more than 10,000 feet of runway, capable of handling most commercial aircraft. Lake Charles is the home of McNeese State University, a four-year, fully accredited university, as well as Sowela Technical Community College, one of Louisiana’s largest vocational schools. An abundance of streams, rivers and lakes along with museums, art galleries and festivals make the parish a true paradise.
The beautiful natural scenery of Cameron Parish is something not to be missed. The Creole Nature Trail All-American Road, a 180-mile drive through “Louisiana Outback” is a paradise which features beautiful plants and wildflowers and exotic wildlife, such as alligators, rare birds and many other colorful critters, all amidst the marshes and bayous of Southwest Louisiana. Cameron’s plentiful flora and fauna attract over 200,000 visitors each year, from nature lovers looking for native critters like alligators to photographers wanting to catch a breathtaking sunset or nautical scene, to bird watchers eyeing the vast variety of species found here, to beachcombers enjoying the shoreline. Cameron Parish offers a great opportunity for hunting and fishing and is a natural backdrop for industry, especially oil and gas. With its proximity to the Gulf of Mexico, it is no wonder that pipeline companies, petroleum companies, marine support vessels, offshore drilling operations and associated businesses top the list of revenue-producing businesses for the parish. For sportsmen, the area is known as “Sportsman’s Paradise” which has easy access to fishing, hunting, and wildlife which makes the region among the best in the world.
People from all over the world visit Jefferson Davis Parish to enjoy and experience rich Cajun and Indian culture. The film industry has long since discovered the unique scenery of Jeff Davis Parish, and has featured the parish in many productions. Four main transportation arteries run through the parish with I-10, US 90 and US 190 east to west, and US 165 to the north and Jeff Davis is strategically located between two major markets. The parish’s economic base includes health care services, shipbuilding, construction, agriculture, and oil field services. The Jennings Airport has a 5,000 foot runway, and the parish has many industrial sites including the Lacassine Industrial Park on I-10.
Learn more about the SWLA Economic Development Alliance.