Jacksonville Among Nation’s Fastest Growing Cities

May 24, 2019

If you’ve lived in Jacksonville for more than a few years and feel like it’s more crowded, you’re right.

The U.S. Census Bureau has a new report out that shows the city of Jacksonville’s population surged by an estimated 12,153 residents between 2017 and 2018. Jacksonville's estimated city population as of July 1, 2018 was 903,889.

The South and West continue to have the fastest-growing cities in the U.S., according to the new census estimates.

Phoenix topped of the list 15 cities with the largest population gains, with an increase of 25,288 people. Jacksonville is at the No. 7 spot. Miami is No. 15, with a gain of 8,884 people, bringing its city population up to 470,914.

This U.S. census map shows a visual representation of the estimated number of people in Florida cities with populations of 50,000 or more. Jacksonville is the largest city by area in the continental U.S., spanning 747 square miles.
Credit U.S. Census Bureau

In the South, the fastest growing cities in order of population growth were Austin, Texas; Jacksonville; Frisco, Texas; McKinney, Texas; and Miami.

In Jacksonville, the population boom has resulted in multifamily home construction's hitting an all-time high for new starts, with roughly 2,500 units begun since June 2018, according to real estate firm Colliers International’s 2018 year-end report.

Colliers predicted another record-setting year for 2019, with nearly 7,000 units under construction.

The Jacksonville metro area had 77,956 multifamily units in December, the Colliers’ report said, with a tight vacancy rate of 3.8% and an annual rent growth of 4.3%. The nation’s overall housing stock grew by 0.8%, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Jacksonville International Airport also broke an 11-year-old record for passenger traffic in 2018 with 6,460,253 air travelers last year.

The Jacksonville Aviation Authority is seeking design bids for a new concourse to accommodate more passengers at the airport, which saw business grow 16% last year. 

NPR's Richard Gonzales contributed to this report.

Bill Bortzfield can be reached at bbortzfield@wjct.org, 904-358-6349 or on Twitter at @BortzInJax.