State of the City: The Austinite

State of the City: The Austinite Cover Story: January 2015.

The speed with which Austin is growing seems to be the hottest topic of conversation around the city these days. An explosion of “Don’t move here” t-shirts and “We hear Houston is nice” bumper stickers proliferate amid the buzz about how many thousands of people move to the city and its surrounding areas each month. In January 2014, Forbes magazine named Austin the number-one fastest growing city in the country—for the fourth year in a row.

“With a 2.5 percent population growth rate (estimated annual) for 2013—the highest of all the geographic regions­—­­and an economy that expanded 5.88 percent last year, it’s hard for other cities to compete these days,” the Forbes report stated.

U.S. Census Bureau numbers show that during 2013, an average 131 people per day moved to the Austin Metropolitan Statistical Area (which includes Bastrop, Caldwell, Hays, Travis and Williamson Counties), bringing the total metropolitan area population to 1.8 million. And that number was down from the previous two years; in 2012, 146 people moved here each day, while 2011 welcomed 148 newcomers daily.

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