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The 15 Fastest-Growing Cities in the U.S.

Ellen Gutoskey
Georgetown, Texas.
Georgetown, Texas. / RoschetzkyIstockPhoto/iStock via Getty Images Plus
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When it comes to the most populous cities in the U.S., Texas boasts five in the top 15: Houston, San Antonio, Dallas, Austin, and Fort Worth. The Lone Star State has an impressive presence on the list of fastest-growing cities, too—but the cities themselves aren’t the same.

Georgetown tops the list with a 10.5-percent population increase between July 2020 and July 2021, according to data released last month by the U.S. Census Bureau. (Only cities with at least 50,000 residents were included in the breakdown.) As of July 2021, an estimated 75,420 people live in Georgetown, and at the rate it’s expanding, that number could double before 2028. Leander, the runner-up, is slightly smaller than Georgetown both in population size and growth rate: 67,124 and 10.1 percent, respectively. Texas has one other spot in the top 15—New Braunfels, a city just northeast of San Antonio with nearly 99,000 residents and an 8.3-percent growth rate. 

Two other states also landed three cities in the top 15. Florida’s Fort Myers, North Port, and Port St. Lucie came in sixth, ninth, and 12th places, respectively. Idaho’s Meridian, Caldwell, and Nampa swept the last three spots. A whopping five cities in Arizona are amassing new residents in droves: Queen Creek, Buckeye, Casa Grande, Maricopa, and Goodyear. The Grand Canyon State appears to be attracting more settlers from California than from any other state.

The South and West have become migration hotspots for multiple reasons, one of which is simply because they offer more space than crowded metropolitan areas elsewhere in the country. Taxes may play a role, too: Texas and Florida have no state income tax, and Arizona’s rates are modest. The balmy winter weather doesn’t hurt, either.

Check out the top 15 fastest-growing cities below—complete with population size as of July 2021 and growth percentage—and learn more takeaways from the Census Bureau’s report here.

1. Georgetown, Texas (75,420) // 10.5 percent
2. Leander, Texas (67,124) // 10.1 percent
3. Queen Creek, Arizona (66,346) // 8.9 percent
4. Buckeye, Arizona (101,315) // 8.6 percent
5. New Braunfels, Texas (98,857) // 8.3 percent
6. Fort Myers, Florida (92,245) // 6.8 percent
7. Casa Grande, Arizona (57,699) // 6.2 percent
8. Maricopa, Arizona (62,720) // 6.1 percent
9. North Port, Florida (80,021) // 5.5 percent
10. Spring Hill, Tennessee (53,339) // 5.4 percent
10. Goodyear, Arizona (101,733) // 5.4
11. Port St. Lucie, Florida (217,523) // 5.2 percent
11. Meridian, Idaho (125,963) // 5.2 percent
11. Caldwell, Idaho (63, 629) // 5.2 percent
12. Nampa, Idaho (106,186) // 5.0 percent

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