Nov 14, 2022 - News

Salt Lake City is among America's fastest-growing cities

Illustration of a luggage cart carrying apartments, a house, and high-rises.

Illustration: Lindsey Bailey/Axios

Utah's capital ranks as the seventh fastest-growing city in the U.S., according to a report released in October by a nonpartisan think tank affiliated with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Driving the news: The American Growth Project by the Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise found that the top 10 fastest-growing cities in the U.S. are moving the "center of gravity" for economic activity away from the East Coast, executive director Gregory Brown tells Axios' Madalyn Mendoza.

  • Researchers built the list by weighing factors that included county-level employment rates and economic output for each city.
  • Other fast-growing cities include: San Francisco; Austin, Texas; Seattle; Raleigh and Durham, North Carolina.; Dallas; Denver; Charlotte, North Carolina.; New Orleans and Orlando, Florida.

Why it matters: These are America's next boomtowns — if local leaders find ways to capitalize on burgeoning industries, Brown says.

  • These cities will need to invest in infrastructure, such as housing, education and job training to fuel their growth potential.

Details: The report found Salt Lake City's scientific and technical services sector reported a 60% growth in the last decade.

  • Health care, retail trade, manufacturing and educational services sectors also grew during the same time period.

The big picture: Utah's population is expected to grow by 2.2 million residents by 2060, according to projections from the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute.

  • The institute found an estimated 1.3 million more jobs would help drive Utah's population growth.

Yes, but: "[Salt Lake City] is not immune to problems affecting similar high-growth areas, such as sharp rises in rent and expenses that have led to many businesses being priced out," researchers wrote in the report.

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