Census Bureau: Georgia town, Louisiana parish fastest growers
Hinesville-Fort Stewart, Ga., was the fastest growing metropolitan statistical area between July 1, 2008, and July 1, 2009, according to data the U.S. Census Bureau released on Tuesday. St. Bernard Parish, La., was the nation’s fastest growing county or parish among counties with populations 10,000 and more.
Hinesville-Fort Stewart saw its population climb 5.9 percent to 74,000 between 2008 and 2009, according to the Census Bureau’s July 1, 2009, population estimates for the nation’s metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas. Kennewick-Pasco-Richland, Wash., was the second fastest-growing metro area over the time period with a 3.6 percent increase, to 246,000, followed by Raleigh-Cary, N.C., and Austin-Round Rock, Texas, with growth rates of 3.2 and 3.1 percent, respectively.
St. Bernard Parish grew by 7.9 percent during the time period. The list of top 10 fastest-growing counties was rounded off by Long County, Ga. (7.2 percent); Chambers County, Texas (7 percent); Duchesne County, Utah (6 percent); Campbell County, Wyo. (6 percent); Uintah County, Utah (5.7 percent); Franklin County, Wash. (5.7 percent); Liberty County, Ga. (5.6 percent); Manassas Park city, Va. (5.5 percent); and Orleans Parish, La. (5.4 percent). Of the 10 fastest-growing counties, only three — St. Bernard Parish, Orleans Parish and Franklin County — were among the 10 fastest growing from 2007 to 2008.
Overall, 46 of the 50 fastest-growing metro areas between 2008 and 2009 were located entirely in the South or West. Another three were located in the Midwest, including Fargo, N.D. (26th); Sioux Falls, S.D. (34th); and Iowa City, Iowa (36th). The 31st fastest growing metropolitan area, Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers, Ark./Mo., straddles the South and Midwest. No Northeast metro area was among the top 100 for growth, though the New York metropolitan area, with more than 19 million people, remained the most populous metro area in the nation, followed by Los Angeles with 12.9 million.
Other highlights of the Census Bureau data include:
• Austin was one of eight Texas metro areas among the 20 fastest-growing between 2008 and 2009. The other seven Texas metro areas among the top 20 were: McAllen-Edinburg-Mission (8th), Odessa (9th), College Station-Bryan (13th), Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown (14th), Midland (15th), Laredo (19th), and Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington (20th). Another five of the top 20 were within Colorado, Utah and Idaho.
• Harris County, Texas, had the largest numeric increase from 2008 to 2009, with an increase of 90,000. Among the top five counties following Harris County in numeric increase were Los Angeles County, Calif. (69,000); Maricopa County, Ariz. (65,000); Tarrant County, Texas (40,000); and Dallas County, Texas (40,000).
• The top five most-populous counties in the country were Los Angeles County, which had a 2009 population of 9,848,000, followed by Cook County, Ill. (5,287,000); Harris County (4,071,000); Maricopa County (4,023,000); and San Diego County, Calif. (3,054,000).
• Half of the 20 fastest-growing counties from 2008 to 2009 are either in Georgia or Texas, with each state having five counties in the top 20. Of the remaining 20 fastest-growing counties, three are in Virginia, two are in Louisiana, two are in Utah, and one each is in Washington, Florida and Wyoming.
The estimates are based on 2000 Census data and updated by using administrative records to estimate components of population change — namely births, deaths, and domestic and international migration. “These are the last population estimates for counties and metro areas before the release of 2010 Census numbers for smaller areas in April 2011,” Census Bureau Director Robert Groves said. “In December, we will release the official population counts for the nation and states.”