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TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Enrollment at The University of Alabama has helped push Tuscaloosa’s population to more than 100,000 for the first time, according to UA’s Center for Business and Economic Research.
The City of Tuscaloosa reached 100,000 residents in 2017, according to the recently released U.S. Census Bureau’s new population estimates for cities and towns.
Tuscaloosa has been among the top five places in Alabama with the largest annual numeric increases in population since 2010.
“The growth of student population has triggered an increase in the number of faculty and staff employed at the University as well as jobs available in other industries such as accommodation and food services,” said Viktoria Riiman, socioeconomic analyst for CBER.
UA’s Center for Business and Economic Research is a member of the U.S. Census Bureau Federal-State Co-operative for Population Estimates and Projections and supplies vital statistics and group quarter data that support calculation of estimates. It also participates in reviewing the estimates.
The City of Huntsville gained the largest number of new residents from 2016 to 2017, followed by Tuscaloosa and Auburn.
“The City of Huntsville and Madison County continue seeing larger net migration or more new residents moving into the area than residents moving out of the area,” Riiman said. “Strong employment growth in professional, scientific and technical services is one of the leading factors that bring people to the area.”
Chelsea and Pike Road were both among the top 10 fastest growing cities/towns and among the top 10 with the largest numeric increase.
Out of the 10 fastest growing (by percent increase) cities/towns in Alabama, two were in Baldwin County (Loxley and Spanish Fort) and two in Shelby County (Chelsea and Westover). The town of Loxley was the fastest growing place in Alabama last year, with a 16.7 percent increase in population (an increase of 335 people).
The 10 largest Alabama cities have not changed since 2010, though there has been a shift in rankings. Huntsville surpassed Mobile in 2016 to become the third largest city and has a population of 194,585 in 2017, while Auburn surpassed Decatur in 2012 to become the eighth largest city and has a current population of 63,973.
The University of Alabama, the state’s oldest and largest public institution of higher education, is a student-centered research university that draws the best and brightest to an academic community committed to providing a premier undergraduate and graduate education. UA is dedicated to achieving excellence in scholarship, collaboration and intellectual engagement; providing public outreach and service to the state of Alabama and the nation; and nurturing a campus environment that fosters collegiality, respect and inclusivity.