?According to recent data released by the U.S. Census Bureau for July 2011 through July 2012, nearly half the fastest growing cities in the United States are in Texas. No other state had more than one city in the top fifteen list of fastest growing large towns and cities, testament to the Lone Star State’s strong economy, high quality of life and business-friendly climate. With low taxes, a lively entrepreneurial climate and inexpensive real estate, these Texas cities have seen consistently strong population growth in recent years. Following is a round up of these vibrant, growing urban areas.
Perfectly situated between Austin and San Antonio, little San Marcos just passed the 50,000 population mark, crossing the bureau’s threshold from town to city, and its most recent population increase of 5 percent has earned it the distinction of the fastest growing city in the country. With a cool cosmopolitan mix of vibrant universities, energetic economic development and a highly-rated quality of life, this little city is less than three hours from any major city in the state and only two hours from the coast. Two international airports are nearby.
With a population around 2.2 million, energy-rich Houston is growing fast, and new residents of this vibrant megalopolis number close to 35,000, representing an impressive gain of 1.6 percent. Although the city has always profited richly from the oil industry, today Houston has strong diversification in the health care, financial services and construction sectors, lending an added element of strength and stability to its economy. A huge representation of Fortune 500 companies includes Phillips 66, Sysco and Quanta Services. All in all, an inviting combination of highly paying jobs and metropolitan area home prices that fall well below the national average make the area supremely appealing to new residents.
Sunny San Antonio has seen an influx of nearly 25,500 new residents, bringing its total population to around 1.4 million. Originally a blue collar town that drew people and jobs through its military bases, including Fort Sam Houston and Lakeland Air Force Base, the area is now luring a lot of cutting-edge companies. Among the relative newcomers are Toyota, Medtronic and cloud computing company Rack Space, while Fortune 500 giants include USAA and NuStar Energy. Not only are jobs relatively abundant and well paid, but the cost of living is far lower than in similarly-sized cities elsewhere in the country, including Manhattan, Los Angeles and Chicago. Biggest savings come in housing, with the median single-family home price falling nearly $17,000 lower than the national average.
State capital Austin, also known as the Live Music Capital of the World, has shown it’s so much more than just a bustling entertainment scene. However, there’s no denying that this historic yet youthful city’s unique blend of tech firms, universities, super music and great barbecue has helped add a whopping 25,400 residents to bring its total population to 840,000. The city’s Fortune 500 companies include Whole Foods Markets and Dell. Austin is also home to one of the largest college campuses in the country, the University of Texas, boasting strong business, computer and engineering programs that greatly enrich the local economy.
With inexpensive real estate and few regulatory limits on construction, it’s fairly easy for businesses to start up or expand in bustling, sprawling Dallas. The city is home to major telecom companies including Nortel, Sprint and AT&T, as well as diverse Fortune 500 companies including Texas Instruments, ExxonMobile, Southwest Airlines and Kimberley-Clark. Although the metropolitan area encompasses some 340 square miles, much is sparsely settled, leaving plenty of room for the some 23,300 new residents that bring total population up to 1.2 million.
Note: Population Figures came from this article: http://money.cnn.com/gallery/real_estate/2013/05/24/fastest-growing-cities/index.html