Inc. Magazine has released its annual survey of the Best Cities for Doing Business – with Bellingham, Washington; St. George, Utah; and McAllen, Texas ranking as this year’s top three “boom towns.”

The report includes articles, statistics, lists broken down by city size, and an interactive map. Another map, “The State of Job Growth” snapshots the employment picture throughout the country.

The study, conducted by Michael Shires, a public policy professor at Pepperdine University, examines demographic and economic trends, with a primary focus on employment growth – “the best measure of a region’s economic vitality, especially as it applies to entrepreneurs.” This year’s survey looked at 393 communities, a larger number than ever before, allowing for a more accurate assessment.

Large urban areas, like New York and Boston continue to fall into the bottom of the rankings, while suburban areas and small “peripheral” cities continue to gain momentum.