Kittitas County ranked among top-ten micro-areas for growth

@Kayla Bonar Daily Record Mar 28
1 min. read

Kittitas County is one of the top 10 fastest growing counties in the United States.

According to the United States Census Bureau, Kittitas County is the 10th fastest growing county by percentage in the United States in 2015 to 2016 with a 4.2 percent growth rate. The county gained 1,809 people in 2015 increasing the population to 44,866. Kittitas County was the only county in Washington on the list. The study validates the county’s growth predictions, Kittitas County Commissioner Laura Osiadacz said.

“I am a little surprised that is the 10th fastest county in the entire United States,” Osiadacz said. “But when you look at our location and how we sit compared to King County I think that definitely isn’t completely shocking. I think we’re not too far away and we have more property available so people are seeing it as an opportunity to have a little more space and be able to have a home where you get a little bit more for your money.”

Ellensburg was also listed as one of the top five fastest growing micro areas in the country. Micro areas consist of 27.7 million people, 9 percent of the nation’s population. Ellensburg was listed as the third fastest growing micro area.

In 2016 the county hired BERK Consulting to complete a growth prediction after the Washington state Office of Financial Management provided a broad estimate for growth. The consulting agency predicted the county would reach a population of 64,408 at 1.89 percent growth per year. The Kittitas County Conference of Governments decided to aim for 2 percent growth for year. Osiadacz said the bureau’s census validates that estimation.

“It validates what the county has been doing with the county comprehensive plan,” she said. “It shows that Kittitas County will continue to have a large amount of growth and the county as well as city needs to make sure they are responsibly planning for that growth.”

Kayla Bonar, Daily Record News