Latest Census Numbers Show Golden Strip Still a Hub of Growth


July 26, 2008

By Nathaniel Cary and Kelly VanLeeuwen – Greenville News

Led by Simpsonville, cities in the Golden Strip are rapidly adding residents, according to the latest U.S. Census numbers, but officials say the statistics don’t tell the whole story.

Simpsonville, Fountain Inn and Mauldin are among the fastest-growing cities in the state, and their officials say the growth really is more than the Census numbers show.

U.S. Census 2007 estimates rank Simpsonville first in population growth in Greenville County and 12th highest in the state among municipalities. It is the fifth-fastest growing municipality in the state for cities with populations of more than 10,000.

Census estimates place Simpsonville’s growth rate at 4.7 percent from July 2006 to July 2007. The city grew from 16,009 to 16,761 in the past year. More telling is the city’s continued growth rate. Since 2000 Simpsonville has grown 14 percent, adding 3,013 residents.

Even with the high growth rate, Simpsonville City Administrator Russell Hawes said the census figures lag behind the city’s actual totals.

“Our estimate of the city’s population currently is 18,550,” Hawes said. “The census has continually undercounted Simpsonville. We’re working with them directly to make sure the census has the correct dwelling unit information.”

The two Golden Strip cities of Simpsonville and Fountain Inn both ranked among the tops in the state in growing populations, according to the Census 2007 estimates, while Mauldin’s growth has slowed slightly.



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