Census: Northwest Arkansas Population Growth Ranks 23rd Nationally

New U.S. Census Bureau estimates show Northwest Arkansas was the nation’s 23rd fastest-growing metropolitan area from 2010 to 2014.

The estimates, made public today, show the Northwest Arkansas population on July 1, 2014, was 501,653. This means the region, on a typical day, added about 24.8 people to its population between April 1, 2010, and July last year.

While the region likely crossed the 500,000 resident milestone in spring 2014, it’s the first time the Census Bureau noted it.

Among the 22 metropolitan statistical areas growing faster than the Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers (Northwest Arkansas) MSA, 10 are in Texas or Florida. The nation’s growth was led by The Villages, Fla. The Florida retirement community’s population has increased 22 percent since the 2010 Census.

Northwest Arkansas’ growth is remarkable, too, increasing 8.3 percent over the four-year span.

Other noteworthy statistics:

  • Northwest Arkansas moved up one spot to become the nation’s 105th largest MSA, slipping past Santa Rosa, Calif.
  • The 24.8 people added to the Northwest Arkansas population on a typical day were more than some far larger MSAs, includingCincinnati (22.5 people a day), Louisville (21.9), Tucson (15.6), St. Louis (11.9), Memphis (11.9), and Milwaukee (10.5).
  • Houston (adding 367 people a day) was among only 50 MSAs adding more people a day to the population than Northwest Arkansas.
  • Jonesboro (4.7 percent) and Little Rock (4.2 percent) also experienced solid growth over the four years.
  • Neighboring MSAs of Tulsa (20.5 people a day), Little Rock (18.9) and Springfield (10) added fewer people to their populations per day when compared to Northwest Arkansas.