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What was Austin’s fastest-growing decade?

We’re digging into historical population growth trends in ATX.

The Austin skyline, as seen from Lady Bird Lake

Let’s take a deep dive into the Capital City’s growth rates.

Photo by ATXtoday

Austin may be the fastest-growing metro areas in the US, but it turns out the 2020s have nothing on the Capital City of the 1990s.

Last year, the Austin metro area had a population growth rate of 2.79%. That number represents ~50,000 new residents, but it’s a solid two percentage points lower than the city’s record.

Since 1950, ATX’s biggest annual population boom actually happened in 1997, when the number of residents increased by 4.9% in a single year.

In fact, the duration of the ‘90s marked substantial growth in our state capital, with annual rates staying above 4.2% for the entire decade.

In comparison, rates fell to 3.6% in 2019, and have been dropping ever since. United Nations projections predict that number will fall below 1% by 2030, at which time the metro area’s population will be ~2.45 million.

A graph of population growth rate data from 1990-2030.

The United Nations predicts annual growth rates in the Austin metro area will fall below 1% by 2030.

Graphic by ATXtoday, data sourced from