The US Bureau of Statistics has just released fresh data on the fastest growing cities in the U.S., and Colorado boasts a few representatives in the top twenty. But what exactly constitutes a fast growth rate? Well, in most cases, the statistics take into account rate of population change, employment/unemployment rate, job growth, and income per capita. The most recent statistical attributes of a population are demographics.
These types of data come in handy in public policy, with the most commonly evaluated demographics being employment status, home ownership, mobility, disabilities, age, race, gender, and even location. Both trends and distributions of values within a certain demographic variable are important. Keep in mind that collegiate students living within city limits are also included in this data. Most of the cities in this list shouldn’t really come as a surprise to you, considering their impressive growth rate over the last few years.
Here are five of the fastest growing cities in Colorado in 2016.
According to the US Bureau of Statistics, Denver is actually the fastest growing city of the fifty biggest cities in the U.S. The Mile-High City offers a fascinating combination of a strong economy, great facilities, and an impressive alpine locale. Last year alone, Denver attracted 18,582 new occupants, translating to a 2.8 percent annual growth rate. In total, about 682,454 residents call Denver home.
The best part is that the increase in population has not taken a toll on unemployment statistics, which remains at a low 3.3 percent. As president and CEO of Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce, Kelly Brough, puts it, it’s like a gold rush in the city. The two most significant factors to consider when deciding on a place to live today are a good job and a great life quality. And Denver, Colorado seems to provide just that.
Located just east of Denver, Aurora has been recognized as the second fastest growing city in Colorado at a period when communities around the country are competing to attract skilled professionals. On a national scale, Aurora is the 5th largest suburb in the United States in terms of population. The city houses approximately 339,030 residents from 325,078 last year, representing an estimated increase of about 14,000 people.
Fresh data also suggests that the city is one of the fastest growing large suburbs in the nation, ranking 4th among these cities. The main reason for the tremendous growth rate in Aurora has got to be major investments in the city over the last number of years by numerous developers and companies across a wide range of industries, including transportation & logistics, renewable energy, aerospace & defense, and bioscience.
The result has been a surge in employment opportunities, with each of these sectors providing hundreds of jobs for the residents. Aurora also offers attractive home prices, superior quality of life, and affordable cost of living, which is very appealing for new residents.
Greely experienced a significant growth rate last year as the economy continued to recover. This was manifested in the number of people employed and the size of the workforce, in addition to a substantial decline in the rate of unemployment. This growth can be partly attributed to increased gas and oil drilling activity. However, despite this leading to an impressive 50 percent drop in oil prices throughout the second part of 2014 and the whole of last year, the local economy was hardly affected due to diversification over the last ten years.
2015 also saw a progression in building activity, but the number of new residential units in that year was less than in 2014. The population rate in Greely increased by 1.97 percent, translating to a growing diversity in the city’s economy.
If the current trend continues without a recession over the next 5 years, you can expect the continued growth rate to average 2-2.5 percent, meaning that the city’s growth rate is not likely to be affected unless by unforeseen events. Greeley’s unemployment rate is currently 6.10 percent, representing a job growth of 3.26 percent that is predicted to rise to 40.40 percent over the next decade.
Loveland has received an explosive growth due to several regional trends in the last few years. The neighboring Weld County, for instance, enjoyed increased oil production that prompted GDP growth in the area, subsequently creating jobs and luring people to the Loveland region. Similarly, the nearby Boulder and Denver experienced a considerable growth in science and technology, which in turn buoyed the whole region.
Some of the other factors that draw people to the city are a vibrant arts environment, an educated workforce, the outdoor amenities, and the proximity of research universities. In particular, the population growth in Loveland has increased by a stunning 1.7 percent while housing growth rate has been amplified by 6.8 percent. Unemployment rate, on the other hand, has plummeted by 2.7 percent while the GDP growth has increased by 5.9 percent.
The oil boom has been praised for the significant boost in most of the cities in this region, including Bismarck and Odessa.
The Fort Collins metropolitan area had the highest population growth last year in Colorado. Overall, the metro was ranked as the tenth fastest growing population nucleus in the nation in 2015, boasting an impressive 333,577 residents with a growth rate of 2.7% from the previous year. Over 14,000 people migrated to Northern Colorado within a span of twelve months. Part of the reason behind this growth has been linked to a strong economic development, increased gas and oil activity, and upsurge of area universities.
The city identifies resource and infrastructure needs through these census population estimates. They can have an impact on the comprehensive plan and the capital improvement plan. Fort Collins is still the largest municipality within the Larimer County, although Timnath, Windsor, Wellington, and Loveland are all coming at a significant pace.
Between 2010 and 2014, Timnath was ranked the fastest growing municipality in the state, after tripling in size over a period of five years. Being originally a rural town with a relatively small base size, Timnath are obviously feeling this growth, which has been largely credited to a massive increase in housing units.
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