Census Confirms Fayetteville's Remarkable Growth, Best in State

The Northwest Arkansas cities of Fayetteville, Bentonville, Centerton, Goshen and Cave Springs were among the most remarkable growth stories in the most recent year, new U.S. Census Bureau estimates show.

The Bureau’s estimates, made public last week, show Fayetteville added 1,602 people to its population between July 1, 2013 and July 1, 2014. With 80,621 residents, Fayetteville added more people than any city in the state.

Four Northwest Arkansas cities – Bentonville, Fayetteville, Rogers and Springdale — added more than 1,200 residents apiece, the Census estimates. They were the only Arkansas cities to add more than 1,000 people.

The Northwest Arkansas Council analyzed the Census estimates to learn more about the growth of the region's large and small cities.

Fayetteville, the home of the University of Arkansas, actually grew faster than far larger cities across the U.S., exceeding places such as Des Moines, Spokane, Tucson, Wichita, Tulsa and Springfield, Mo.

Bentonville, the home of Walmart Stores, Sam’s Club and Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, and its neighbor Centerton put up the state’s most impressive percentage growth rates among cities with more than 10,000 residents.

Centerton grew by 6 percent, and now has 11,193 residents.

Bentonville grew by 3.7 percent to reach 41,613 residents. It added more people (1,492) than much-larger Tucson (pop. 527,972), Tulsa (pop. 399,682) and Wichita (pop. 388,413).

Among the most interesting details from the U.S. Census Bureau estimates are related to the significant growth of small Arkansas cities, including Goshen and Cave Springs.

In fact, just 19 of the more than 19,000 cities in the U.S. exceeded the 14.37 percent growth rate of Goshen, a town with 1,433 residents that’s east of Fayetteville. Cave Springs, which is in Benton County, grew almost as fast, adding 301 residents and reaching a population of 2,455 (13.97 percent).

Five small Arkansas cities, in fact, ranked among the top 50 fastest-growing places in the U.S. Led by Goshen at No. 20, its  was followed by Cave Springs (No. 21), Brookland (28), Calico Rock (41) and Austin (45).

Other facts gleaned from the U.S. Census Bureau estimates:

  • Fayetteville added more people than just about every city in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri and Kansas. The exceptions were Oklahoma City, Kansas City, Mo.; Edmond, Okla.; and Overland Park, Kan.
  • Rogers and Springdale each added more people to their populations than the larger cities of Springfield, Mo.; Broken Arrow, Okla.; Garland, Texas; Anaheim, Calif.; and Newark, N.J.
  • Fayetteville since the 2010 Census has added more people than 19,376 out of the nation’s 19,510 cities. The city has 7,041 new residents since April 2010.
  • The population growth of Fayetteville, Rogers and Bentonville was remarkable in Arkansas, but each of those cities would have been the fastest-growing place in Illinois, Michigan, New Mexico, Mississippi, Rhode Island and a few other states.