Gilbert among nation’s fastest-growing cities, passes Scottsdale

Gilbert was one of the nation’s fastest-growing communities in 2013 and surpassed Scottsdale to become the Valley’s fifth largest municipality, according to new population estimates released by the U.S. Census Bureau.

The town’s population surged to an estimated 229,972 people in July 2013, up from about 221,000 the previous year, according to Census Bureau data.

That 4-percent growth rate made Gilbert the 12th fastest-growing municipality in the U.S. last year, joining the likes of Odessa, Texas, and Lehi, Utah, on the list.

San Marcos, Texas, grew the fastest in 2013, climbing 8 percent from the previous year. Goodyear came in at No. 6 in the nation.

Gilbert for the first time is estimated as the Valley’s fifth most-populous community, narrowly leapfrogging Scottsdale. Glendale, the region’s fourth largest city, is now just 5,000 residents ahead of Gilbert, which could pass the West Valley city when the next estimates are released in 2015.

IN VALLEY: Goodyear joins Gilbert as one of fatest-growing municipalities

The town climbed to No. 92 among U.S. municipalities in population after cracking the top 100 for the first time in 2011.

While Gilbert has experienced rapid growth over the last two-and-a-half decades, it has held onto its designation as a town rather than a city, making Gilbert the most-populous town in the nation. The town’s population is comparable to cities such as Reno, Nev.; Baton Rouge, La.; and Irvine, Calif.

Gilbert counted about 208,000 residents in the 2010 census, nearly doubling in size from 2000. In 1990, there were just 29,000 residents in Gilbert.

Town officials have estimated a build-out population of about 330,000 people.

Around the Valley

Census Bureau 2013 population estimates for the top 10 largest Valley municipalities:

• Phoenix: 1,513,367

• Mesa: 457,587

• Chandler: 249,146

• Glendale: 234,632

• Gilbert: 229,972

• Scottsdale: 226,918

• Tempe: 168,228

• Peoria: 162,592

• Surprise: 123,546

• Avondale: 78,822

Article source: http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/local/gilbert/2014/05/22/gilbert-among-nations-fastest-growing-cities-passes-scottsdale/9443941/