Shoppers walk across the Broadway and Third Street intersection on Saturday afternoon. The downtown parking structures were filled up during the last day of April and the first day of May as people came to visit the beach and Promenade. (File photo)


Santa Monica’s population grew by just 309 residents in the last year according to new numbers released by the U.S. Census Bureau.

According to the new estimates, Santa Monica’s population increased from 92,169 to 92,478 as of July 1, 2016. The City had a population of 89,736 at the time of the 2010 Census.

Santa Monica’s small growth numbers are in contrast to the 27,173 individuals that moved into the city of Los Angeles growing their population to 3,976,322. Los Angeles had the second largest population increase by raw numbers, beaten only by Phoenix that added 32,113 residents to bring its total population to 1,615,017. Los Angeles retained its position as the nation’s second most populous city behind New York’s 8,537,673 residents.

When growth was measured as a percentage, ten of the top 15 fastest growing large cities were in the South and four of the top five are in Texas.

The Census release said “Conroe, Texas (near Houston), was the fastest-growing large city (population of 50,000 or more) between 2015 and 2016 at 7.8 percent, making its growth rate more than 11 times the nation’s growth rate of 0.7 percent. Some of the other fastest-growing cities were: Frisco, Texas (6.2 percent); McKinney, Texas (5.9 percent); Greenville, S.C. (5.8 percent); and Georgetown, Texas (5.5 percent).”

There were strong regional differences in the new population figures.

“Overall, cities in the South continue to grow at a faster rate than any other U.S region,” said Amel Toukabri, a demographer in the Census Bureau’s population division. “Since the 2010 Census, the population in large southern cities grew by an average of 9.4 percent. In comparison, cities in the West grew 7.3 percent, while cities in the Northeast and Midwest had much lower growth rates at 1.8 percent and 3.0 percent respectively.”

Small towns, defined as having fewer than 5,000 people, account for about 76 percent of the total incorporated communities in the country. Northeast small towns declined by 0.5 percent, Midwest small towns declined by 0.3 percent, small towns in the South grew by 0.2 percent, Western small towns saw the largest growth with an increase of 0.8 percent.

The report said housing growth remained below pre-2007 levels.

“The nation’s housing stock grew by 911,000 last year to reach 135.7 million,” said the report. “The growth rate of 0.7 percent last year was roughly half of what it was in 2007 (1.4 percent). Housing unit growth last year remained below pre-2007 levels in nearly all states except North Dakota (up 1.6 percent last year, compared to a 0.9 percent increase in 2007), the District of Columbia (up 1.4 percent, compared to a 0.9 percent increase in 2007) and Iowa (returning to the 2007 level of 0.7 percent growth).”

The Bureau said additional information regarding age, sex and race information for states and counties will be released later this summer.

Matthew Hall

Matthew Hall has a Masters Degree in International Journalism from City University in London and has been Editor-in-Chief of SMDP since 2014. Prior to working at SMDP he managed a chain of weekly papers...