According to the latest population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau, Meridian, Caldwell and Nampa were among the 15 fastest-growing large cities in the country between July 2020 and July 2021. | (Otto Kitsinger for the Idaho Capital Sun)
BOISE (Idaho Capital Sun) – According to the latest population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau, three Idaho cities were among the 15 fastest-growing large cities in the country between July 2020 and July 2021 — Meridian, Caldwell and Nampa.
By contrast, Boise itself grew by just .68% between July 2020 and July 2021, an increase of 1,625 people.
The population in Meridian and Caldwell increased by 5.2% each, according to the data, and Nampa’s population increased 5%. Meridian had one of the largest numeric increases in population in the country, with 6,234 new people moving in and a total population of 125,963. Meridian edged out Nampa as Idaho’s second largest city in 2014.
The data also showed Kuna outpaced Moscow in population, moving one spot up the population list to No. 13 from 2020 to 2021.
Idaho’s 15 largest cities, as of July 2021. | (Courtesy of the Idaho Department of Labor)
Growth rates for Idaho’s top 15 fastest-growing cities ranged between 20.3% to 5.7% from 2020 to 2021, according to the release. The larger cities experiencing high growth were Post Falls and Kuna at 8.7% and 8.6%, respectively. Star, Rathdrum and Middleton, which are classified as mid-sized towns, had growth rates of 10%, 8.6% and 6.6%, respectively.
Eight of Idaho’s cities lost population, the largest of which was Garden City with a loss of nine residents. Nine smaller population towns experienced flat or zero growth, and Idaho’s overall population increase from 2020 to 2021 was 2.9%, according to the release.
Census data also showed a 2.5% increase in the number of housing units across Idaho over the same time period, which was the second-fastest growth in the country. Housing inventory in Idaho is key to cooling home prices, experts say, particularly in the Treasure Valley. Utah edged out Idaho with a 2.7% increase in housing units, while Texas came in third with 2%.
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