For awhile there, anti-suburbanists were thinking that their favorite type of cities were growing, due to their reading of some census data, but, as New Geography points out, not so; and Sacramento, the quintessential suburban metro area, comes in with a little growth also, 14th of 52.
“Since the housing crash of 2007, the decline of the Sun Belt and dispersed, low-density cities has been trumpeted by the national media and by pundits who believe America’s future lies in compact, crowded, mostly coastal and northern, cities. But apparently, most Americans have not gotten the memo — they seem to be accelerating their push into less dense regions of the Sun Belt.
“An analysis of population data by demographer Wendell Cox, including the Census report for the most recent year released late last week, shows that since 2000, virtually all the 10 fastest-growing metropolitan areas in the United States are located in Sun Belt states. The population of the Raleigh, N.C., metropolitan statistical area has expanded a remarkable 47.8% since 2000, tops among the nation’s 52 metro areas with over 1 million residents. That is more than three times the overall 12.7% growth of those 52 metro areas.
“Austin, Texas, and Las Vegas also expanded more than 40%, putting them second and third on our list. The populations of the other metro areas in the top 10 all expanded by at least 25%, or twice the national average. This jibes nicely with domestic migration trends and growth in the foreign-born population, both of which have been strongest in many of these same cities.
“The most recent numbers, covering July 2011 to July 2012, also reveal some subtle changes in the Sun Belt pecking order. Over the 2000-2012 period, the growth winners included places like Las Vegas, Riverside-San Bernardino and Phoenix, all of which suffered grievously in the housing bust. Although they all clocked population growth better than the national average over the past year, none, besides Phoenix, ranked in the updated top 10.”