The 35 Fastest Growing Cities in America

While there’s a lot to be said for the slow pace and relaxed lifestyle of a small town, it’s undeniable that an ever-growing percentage of the U.S. population craves the job opportunities, hustle and bustle, and entertainment options of the big cities. And while New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago are unlikely to lose their positions as the biggest U.S. cities by population, there are plenty of other towns moving up the ladder. Here are 35 cities that are among the fastest growing in the country.

  1. Frisco, Texas

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    Frisco, Texas

    Sitting at the northern end of the Dallas / Fort Worth metroplex, Frisco is booming. Low unemployment, high wages, a relatively low cost of living, and sunny weather are just some of the perks that are drawing thousands of new residents each year.

    Wikimedia Commons via Michael Barera

  2. Boise, Idaho

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    Boise, Idaho

    With nearly endless opportunities for outdoor recreation, a burgeoning art scene, plenty of trendy restaurants, lots of job growth, and a low cost of living, it’s no wonder that Boise is one of the fastest growing cities in the country.

    istockphoto.com

  3. San Antonio, Texas

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    San Antonio, Texas

    On average, 66 people move to San Antonio every day. Perhaps the rich history, lively River Walk, nice weather, big-city amenities and laid back vibe draw newcomers to the city.

    istockphoto.com

  4. Bend, Oregon

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    Bend, Oregon

    The great outdoors aren't the only thing to love in this nature-lover’s paradise. In Bend, residents also enjoy countless coffee houses, microbreweries, and wineries. There are plentiful job opportunities, especially in the healthcare industry, and commuting around town is a piece of cake.

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  5. Fort Myers, Florida

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    Fort Myers, Florida

    Despite Florida’s reputation as a retirement haven, millennials are flocking to Fort Myers. Not only does the city have a vibrant arts and entertainment scene, it’s also a great place to enjoy boating and other seaside recreation.

    istockphoto.com

  6. Irvine, California

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    Irvine, California

    Located in Orange County, the city of Irvine is a planned community with excellent schools, great job opportunities, sunny weather, and a small suburban feel despite its fast-growing population. Like most cities in Southern California, however, the cost of living is high.

    istockphoto.com

  7. Austin, Texas

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    Austin, Texas

    The self-proclaimed “Live Music Capital of the World,” Austin is not only a great place to catch a show, it’s also a destination for breweries, coffee houses, food trucks, and all of the liveliness that has earned it the unofficial motto of “Keep Austin weird.”

    istockphoto.com

  8. Raleigh, North Carolina

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    Raleigh, North Carolina

    This bustling southern city is home to many large tech companies, including Cisco, IBM, and Lenovo, which draw a large number of college-educated residents—significantly higher than the national average. But there’s also a growing music scene and lively nightlife, all of which can be thoroughly enjoyed by residents thanks to a reasonable cost of living.

    istockphoto.com

  9. Murfreesboro, Tennessee

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    Murfreesboro, Tennessee

    Steeped in Civil War history, today, Murfreesboro is home to a growing population of families and young professionals. They enjoy the excellent schools, many outdoor concerts and plays, and quaint public square.

    istockphoto.com

  10. Las Vegas, Nevada

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    Las Vegas, Nevada

    There’s more to Vegas than the Strip. The cost of living is fairly low—Nevada has no state income tax—and there are many family-friendly suburbs away from the glitz and glamour of the casinos. But of course, when it’s nightlife you’re seeking, Vegas is the place you’ll find it.

    istockphoto.com

  11. Phoenix, Arizona

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    Phoenix, Arizona

    Just like its desert climate, Phoenix’s growth is red hot. That’s partly because there are plenty of jobs here, and a fairly reasonable cost of living, but it’s also thanks to the growing arts district, plentiful shopping and fine dining, and more than 200 miles of designated hiking trails.

    istockphoto.com

  12. Santa Clarita, California

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    Santa Clarita, California

    This planned suburban community in Southern California is home to Six Flags Magic Mountain, but residents of Santa Clarita also enjoy the easy access to nearby Los Angeles, plentiful shopping and restaurants, dry weather, and miles of trails and paseos for hiking and biking.

    istockphoto.com

  13. Seattle, Washington

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    Seattle, Washington

    Yes, on average there are 152 overcast days each year, but that isn’t stopping people—many of them vying for a spot at one of the tech companies headquartered here—from moving to Seattle. Despite the clouds, residents love the coffee and music scene, the many opportunities for outdoor sports, and the 11-story, 362,987-square-foot public library. On the downside, Seattle has one of the highest costs of living in the country.

    istockphoto.com

  14. Charlotte, North Carolina

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    Charlotte, North Carolina

    It’s not only those who work in finance who are moving to Charlotte; plenty of others are drawn by the intriguing mix of old-fashioned southern charm and vibrant city life, the plentiful barbecue and the reasonable—but rising—cost of living.

    istockphoto.com

  15. Pearland, Texas

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    Pearland, Texas

    A suburb of Houston, Pearland shines in its own right. This is a family town, with a higher-than-average percentage of young families drawn by excellent schools, parks, kid-friendly entertainment, and safe neighborhoods. As a plus, the cost of living is fairly reasonable.

    istockphoto.com

  16. Columbus, Ohio

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    Columbus, Ohio

    Although in general, the Midwest is not experiencing the population boom of the South and the West, Columbus is an exception. Young professionals are drawn here not just for the plentiful jobs and the reasonable cost of living, but also to enjoy the theaters, concerts, art and restaurant scene, and of course, the fierce enthusiasm for Ohio State University’s football team.

    istockphoto.com

  17. Loveland, Colorado

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    Loveland, Colorado

    A family-friendly city, Loveland is a suburb with small-town charm. Young families are flocking here for the good schools, job opportunities, and reasonable cost of living, as well as the emerging art scene, microbreweries, and, of course, the beautiful Rocky Mountains.

    istockphoto.com

  18. St. George, Utah

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    St. George, Utah

    St. George attracts a lot of retirees, but families and outdoor-enthusiasts are drawn to this growing city for its proximity to Zion National Park. The city is loaded with hiking and biking trails, and the sunny climate makes it easy to enjoy them.

    istockphoto.com

  19. Fargo, North Dakota

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    Fargo, North Dakota

    The winters might be cold, but residents of Fargo can stay warm inside one of the many excellent microbreweries, coffee shops, or bookstores. Many newcomers to this growing city moved here to work in healthcare, education, or food processing, but it’s also ranked as one of the best cities to start your own business.

    istockphoto.com

  20. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

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    Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

    The semi-tropical climate and miles of sandy beaches aren’t all Myrtle Beach has going for it. If you’re looking for a job in the tourism industry, this is the place to find it, and when not at work, you can enjoy the first-rate golf courses, plentiful restaurants and family-centered activities, and the beautiful weather.

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  21. Greeley, Colorado

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    Greeley, Colorado

    Located around 60 miles north of Denver, Greeley’s booming economy mostly centers on food processing and agriculture. But once the workday is done, it’s the affordability, proximity to bigger cities, opportunities to hike and enjoy nature, good schools, many breweries, and a generally friendly vibe that lure so many people to the city.

    Wikimedia Commons via Bbean32

  22. Houston, Texas

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    Houston, Texas

    It’s already the fourth largest city in the United States, but Houston’s growth shows no signs of slowing. The economy is booming, with plentiful jobs in the oil, gas, healthcare, and manufacturing industries.

    istockphoto.com

  23. Charleston, South Carolina

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    Charleston, South Carolina

    Called “America’s Most Friendly City,” Charleston is noted for its southern hospitality, historical buildings, burgeoning arts scene, wonderful restaurants, and pleasant weather—aside from the hot and humid summers, that is. Many residents move here for jobs in the information technology industry, which has a large presence in the city.

    istockphoto.com

  24. Provo, Utah

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    Provo, Utah

    If you’re looking for a job in the tech industry, Provo is an excellent destination, as the industry is in high gear here. But there’s more to life than work, and that’s why residents also love the city’s many museums, outdoor sports, and food truck scene.

    istockphoto.com

  25. Orlando, Florida

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    Orlando, Florida

    While the tourism industry is huge in Orlando—it’s home to more than a dozen theme parks, including Disneyworld, Universal Orlando, and SeaWorld—industry and tech are also kingpins of the booming job market. The city also has a vibrant music scene, lots of shopping, and plenty of sunny weather.

    istockphoto.com

  26. Meridian, Idaho

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    Meridian, Idaho

    A suburb of Boise, today, Meridian is a bustling city in its own right. The cost of living, although not as low as it used to be, is still fairly low compared to many other areas of the country, and Meridian is a family-friendly town in close proximity to Boise’s big-city amenities, and many outdoor activities for which Idaho is so well known.

    Wikimedia Commons via Explicatorid 

  27. Cape Coral, Florida

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    Cape Coral, Florida

    With more than 400 miles of canals, boats are a big part of the Cape Coral way of life. Although many retirees call the city home, it also appeals to younger people who like the low cost of living, the outdoor-intensive lifestyle, and the low crime rate.

    istockphoto.com

  28. Redwood City, California

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    Redwood City, California

    Located on the San Francisco Peninsula, Redwood City draws residents who want to work at Bay Area tech companies, but prefer to avoid the hustle and bustle of San Francisco. While the cost of living here is very high, it’s a great place to live—if you can afford it.

    istockphoto.com

  29. McKinney, Texas

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    McKinney, Texas

    Located 30 miles north of Dallas, McKinney attracts residents who prefer a suburban pace of life, and want a short commute into the big city. McKinney has great schools, a fairly low cost of living, and is a welcoming place for families.

    istockphoto.com

  30. Pleasanton, California

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    Pleasanton, California

    Another suburb of San Francisco with a booming economy but high cost of living, Pleasanton is home to the corporate headquarters of several major companies, including Safeway, The Cooper Companies, Thoratec, and Blackhawk Network. The thriving downtown is home to many restaurants and shops, as well as a busy farmer’s market.

    istockphoto.com

  31. Ankeny, Iowa

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    Ankeny, Iowa

    Another Midwestern town experiencing fast growth, Ankeny is a suburb of Des Moines. Young professionals and families are drawn to the city’s good schools, low crime rate, reasonable cost of living, many parks and family-friendly activities.

    Wikimedia Commons via Ashton B Crew

  32. Castle Rock, Colorado

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    Castle Rock, Colorado

    This isn’t a city for those who prefer low altitudes: Castle Rock sits at 6,224 feet above sea level, meaning that there are plenty of mountain sports and activities to enjoy. Located about halfway between Denver and Colorado Springs, most residents of this suburban town commute to the larger cities for work.

    istockphoto.com

  33. Franklin, Tennessee

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    Franklin, Tennessee

    South of Nashville, Franklin was named one of the South’s prettiest towns by Southern Living. Along with a number of famous ghost tours, the town has a busy music festival scene, as well as wineries, breweries, and delicious eateries.

    istockphoto.com

  34. Sandy Springs, Georgia

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    Sandy Springs, Georgia

    This affluent suburb of Atlanta is home to several big corporations, including IBM, UPS, and Cisco Systems. That means many good-paying jobs, but the cost of living here is high. Still, many families and young professionals appreciate the excellent schools, the many outdoor activities, and the family-friendly vibe.

    Wikimedia Commons via Thomson200

  35. League City, Texas

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    League City, Texas

    Roughly 20 miles southeast of Houston, League City sits on the Gulf Coast, where there are many opportunities for boating and water sports. The job market here is in high gear, and both job-hunters and entrepreneurs are flocking in droves to this suburban city.

    Wikimedia Commons via BFS Man

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