Jan. 28, 2014
Researchers at the University of Virginia say population growth in the state is slowing down.
The study, from the university’s Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service, says fewer people moved to the Commonwealth last year, but Virginia still outpaced the nation for growth.
The state's population grew between 2012 and 2013 by less than 1 percent. And the nation grew only about 0.7 percent.
Compared to other states, Virginia posted the 14th highest growth rate, and 7th largest population gain. Researchers say the largest population gains were in urban areas, like Northern Virginia.
“Loudoun, Fairfax, Prince William, and Arlington counties, and the city of Alexandria continue to experience considerable growth,” said Hamilton Lombard, the researcher who prepared the estimates. “Together they accounted for more than half of the growth in the Commonwealth since 2010, compared to 44 percent between 2000 and 2010.”
Most localities that lost population or experienced natural decrease were located outside of the so-called “urban crescent,” which stretches from Hampton Roads to Richmond and up the Interstate 95 corridor to Northern Virginia. In Southwest Virginia, all seven coal-producing counties declined in population between 2012 and 2013.