Most rural Indiana counties have lost people, while central Indiana has continued to grow in population size over the past decade, according to new data released Thursday by the U.S. UU. The data also showed that Indiana is growing in racial diversity. Legislators will use the latest batch of information to redraw maps of the House of Representatives and Congressional districts.
The parts of the state that grew could see their influence in the House of Representatives grow as well, as legislators have to adjust district lines to cope with changes in population numbers. That growth was largely driven by the state's growing racial diversity. Indiana's white population declined in the last decade. Compared to other states, Indiana's overall growth was modest.
It wasn't big enough for the state to gain another member of Congress. Indiana will maintain nine congressional districts for the next decade. All other races increased in population size in Indiana. The largest increase occurred in people who identified themselves as two or more races, at 240%, followed by the Asian population at 63.9%.
The population of Black Hoosiers grew by 9.7% and now represents 9.6% of the total population of Indiana. More than half of Indiana's counties lost people in the past decade. Many of them were counties in rural Indiana with already small populations. Of the 15 counties with the smallest population, 14 of them saw their numbers decline in the last decade.
Meanwhile, several counties in central Indiana grew the most. Jackson, Allen and LaGrange Counties grew by more than 8%. Meanwhile, Warrick County, Bartholomew County, and Tippecanoe County grew by more than 7%. Madison, Vigo and Delaware Counties were the most populous counties in the state to lose people.
The population of Westfield, Indiana, increased 7.7 percent last year, making it the fastest-growing place in the state among those with at least 5,000 residents. The city of Hamilton County also had the highest number growth, with 3,640 residents, according to estimates released by the U.S. UU. And analyzed by the Indiana Business Research Center.
Analyzing Indiana, Kinghorn said that clear patterns are showing in areas that are growing and where they are stagnant or declining. The Indianapolis area, or the 11 counties of central Indiana, accounts for most of the population growth, Kinghorn said. According to an IU news release, Indianapolis's suburban communities ranked in the top five of Indiana's fastest-growing places. Whitestown followed Westfield with a population increase of 7.4 percent, McCordsville with a 7 percent increase, Avon with a 5.7 percent increase and Bargersville with 5.4 percent.
Kinghorn also said that growth has been strong in Lake County, along with some emerging suburban communities outside the Chicago area and in the southern part of the state, outside of Louisville. Three Lake County communities are among the 10 fastest-growing places in the state, according to the news release. John increased by 4.9 percent, Cedar Lake by 3.9 percent and Winfield by 3.7 percent. Outside urban areas, Kinghorn said, large swathes of the state are experiencing a decline in population.
Both Evansville, which lost 772 residents, and South Bend, which lost 174 residents, are among them. The problems of the real estate market, where there are too few houses for sale, also affect growth there. In Indiana, Kinghorn said that the main driver of population growth is usually a natural increase, the difference between the number of births and the number of deaths in a year. In the past year, Kinghorn said the natural increase was essentially flat, as the number of deaths skyrocketed due to the pandemic.
Overall, the state's population grew by 0.3 percent, according to the statement. The impact of population growth and decline on a citizen's life really depends on the community in which a person lives, Kinghorn said. Do you want to contact your legislators about an issue that matters to you? Find out how to contact your senators and members of Congress here. Indiana Public Media is home to WFIU Public Radio, WTIU Public Television, which includes your favorite programming from NPR and PBS.
Some larger counties in Indiana that had significant declines in population were Grant (-4.8%) and Wayne (-3.4%). While people leaving small towns and rural communities and moving to urban areas are part of a national trend, numbers like this have not been seen on a census map of Indiana in recent times. Other fast-growing cities in the state include Fort Wayne, whose population increased by 7.6% over the past ten years; Columbus, which gained 7.1%, and Lafayette, which increased by 6.7%. Both Muncie and Terre Haute declined in population: Muncie experienced a decline of almost 5% and Terre Haute by 2%.
The fastest-growing county in the state is still Hamilton County, north of Indianapolis, which has been the state's fastest-growing county for five decades. The next fastest-growing suburb was Boone County, northwest of Indianapolis, where Zionsville is located, which grew by 25%. Hendricks, Johnson and Hancock Counties were next, with growth rates of 20.2%, 15.8% and 14.1%, respectively. All three border Marion County (Indianapolis).
Outside the Indianapolis area, the fastest-growing county was Clark, just across the river from Louisville, Kentucky, on the southernmost tip of Indiana. Clark County grew 9.9% in the last decade, followed by Jackson County, home to Seymour, Indiana, the hometown of singer John Cougar Mellencamp, which grew by 9.6%. The declines are largely due to the pandemic, but 41 counties recorded net immigration to offset losses, resulting in an overall increase in population. Overall, 17 of Indiana's 20 fastest-growing communities are in the Indianapolis metropolitan area or Lake County, according to an IU news release.
Most rural Indiana counties have lost people, while central Indiana has continued to grow in population size over the past decade, according to new data released Thursday by the U. The total population of the state of Indiana increased by 4.7% over the past 10 years and now stands at 6,785,528, according to U. Outside the Indianapolis metropolitan area, Parke County recorded the highest increase, with 1.6%, followed by Clarke County, with 1.2%, and Perry, Warrick and Putnam Counties, with 0.9% each. Joseph County had the second highest decline in the state, with 337 residents, while Jackson County came close with a loss of 306 residents.
Indiana's fastest-growing counties are still suburban communities in the Indianapolis metropolitan area. Of the 69 counties with a natural decline, 41 had strong enough net immigration to overcome these losses and result in an overall increase in population. . .