Census Reveals Fastest Growing Areas

New information released by the U.S. Census Bureau late last month indicates where the future of American growth lies.

📅   Wed April 13, 2016 - National Edition
Brenda Ruggiero - CEG CORRESPONDENT


New information released by the U.S. Census Bureau late last month reveals that the future of American growth apparently has a distinct concentration in suburban areas.
New information released by the U.S. Census Bureau late last month reveals that the future of American growth apparently has a distinct concentration in suburban areas.

New information released by the U.S. Census Bureau late last month reveals that the future of American growth apparently has a distinct concentration in suburban areas, particularly in Sun Belt states such as Florida, Texas and the Carolinas.

Random Samplings, the official blog of the U.S. Census Bureau, states that where people move can have a big impact on the United States.

“In many areas, it drives population change, and it can affect things from jobs, to services, to local infrastructure like buildings and roads,” the blog read. “Domestic migration refers to people moving between areas within the United States, and is often one of the largest contributors to population change. Regionally, the South gains the most net domestic migrants, with roughly 440,000 more people moving into Southern states than leaving them between 2014 and 2015.”

According to the Census release, The Villages, Fla, which is a metro area west of the Orlando metro area, was “the nation's fastest-growing metro area for the third year in a row,” with its population increasing 4.3 percent between 2014 and 2015. Five other Florida metro areas were also in the top 10: Cape Coral-Fort Myers, Punta Gorda, North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton, Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford and Naples-Immokalee-Marco Island.

Texas metros listed among the top 20 fastest growing between 2014 and 2015 were Midland, Odessa, Austin, College Station-Bryan and Houston. Three areas partially or completely within South Carolina were Myrtle Beach-Conway-North Myrtle Beach, S.C.-N.C. (which ranked second nationally), Hilton Head Island-Bluffton-Beaufort and Charleston-North Charleston.

In addition to being among the 20 with the largest numeric gains, Houston, Austin and Orlando were the only three metro areas nationwide to also be listed in the 20 fastest growing (percentage gain) between 2014 and 2015.

State population estimates released in December showed that North Carolina added more than 100,000 people during the last year, making it the ninth state with 10 million or more people. The growth was largely in Raleigh, N.C., and the Charlotte-Concord-Gastonia, N.C.-S.C. metro area.

Other findings revealed that Los Angeles, Calif., is still the nation's most populous county with 10.2 million people on July 1, 2015, but the nation's second-most populous county — Cook, Ill. — reportedly experienced its first population decline since 2007.

Two counties were noted as passing one million in population between 2014 and 2015: Fulton, Ga. (which includes Atlanta), and Wake, N.C. (which includes Raleigh).

The nation's metro areas contained 275.3 million people in 2015, which is a reported increase of about 2.5 million from 2014. A total of 285 of the 381 metro areas nationwide gained population between 2014 and 2015.

The metro area of New York-Newark-Jersey City, N.Y.-N.J.-Pa., remained the most populous between July 1, 2014, and July 1, 2015, followed by Los Angeles, Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, Ill.-Ind.-Wis., Dallas, and Houston. There was a change for the sixth position, with Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, D.C.-Va.-Md.-W.Va. surpassing Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, Pa.-N.J.-Del.-Md.

Micro areas also increased by about 27,000 in the report, containing about 27.3 million people in 2015. The two fastest-growing micro areas in that time frame were Williston and Dickinson, N.D.