New population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau show a county in central Iowa leads the state in growth from 2010 to 2012. Gary Krob of the Iowa Library Services State Data Center says Dallas County is also near the top nationally. “They were actually ranked 14th in the nation as far as fastest growing counties, and by far the fastest in our state as well,” Krob says.
“They grew by eight-point-eight percent, I think they added about 5,000 residents to the total population since 2010.” Dallas County is in the minority — as only about one third of Iowa’s counties gained population in those two years.
“We had 31 counties that gained population out of the 99. But seven of those counties accounted for 88-percent of the population grown and all seven of those counties were in the metropolitan areas,” Krob explains. Polk, Johnson, Linn, Scott, Story, and Dubuque County joined Dallas County to make up the big seven that carried the state’s population growth.
The Census Bureau information includes statistics about births, deaths, and migration into Iowa. “What it shows is that counties are losing population through domestic migration to other states,” Krob says.
“But we are still getting a lot of migration internationally to a lot of these counties. The rural counties don’t have the international migration that the urban counties do.” Between 2010 and 2012, Iowa gained 9,269 residents from other nations and lost 3,274 residents to other states for a net migration of 5,995.
Births outnumbered deaths by 22,494. Among counties, 17 counties experienced more people moving in than moving out and 41 counties recorded more births than deaths since the 2010 census.
The information also showed the metropolitan areas that are gaining the most. “I noticed that Iowa City was the fastest growing metropolitan area in our state — they grew by 3.7-percent — second to Des Moines/West Des Moines, which was 3.4-percent. So there’s some significant growth going on over there in Iowa City,” Krob says.
The new county population estimates, rankings, and components are on the Iowa Library Services-State Data Center web site at: www.iowadatacenter.org