Austin is already set to become the third biggest metro area by the year 2100, but what about on a much smaller scale? A new report has found the state capital will take the gold as the fastest-growing large metro area in the country by 2028, with two other Texas metros close behind.
Austin-Round Rock-Georgetown's total population in 2023 adds up to nearly 2.4 million people, according to the population growth analysis by Site Selection Group. With a projected population growth rate of 13.55 percent (the highest out of all metro areas), that means Austin's population in the next five years could balloon to more than 2.7 million people.
"Most population growth is occurring across the Sun Belt," the report's author says. "Specific to the large metro areas, eight of the top 10 growth markets are located within the Sun Belt [such as] Florida, North Carolina, Tennessee and Texas."
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land landed right behind Austin as the predicted second-fastest growing large metro area. The projected 9.62 percent growth rate means the metro's current population of 7.3 million will expand to over 8 million people in the next five years.
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington also made it into the top five; a 8.64 percent growth rate will stretch the Metroplex from 7.8 million residents to nearly 8.5 million by 2028.
The top 10 fastest-growing large metro areas by 2028 are:
- No. 1 – Austin-Round Rock-Georgetown
- No. 2 – Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land
- No. 3 – Nashville-Davidson-Murfeesboro-Franklin, Tennessee
- No. 4 – Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina
- No. 5 – Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington
- No. 6 – Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, Florida
- No. 7 – Salt Lake City, Utah
- No. 8 – Charlotte-Concord-Castonia, North Carolina-South Carolina
- No. 9 – Jacksonville, Florida
- No. 10 – Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Washington
The report was used to discover the American metro areas that will have the most "favorable long-term labor conditions." Each metro area was categorized into one of three groups based on overall population size: large (over 1 million people), mid-size (between 500,000 and 999,999 people), and small (between 250,000 and 499,999 people).
"Although population growth does not guarantee success with hiring and retaining employees, it does provide validation that labor conditions could be trending in a more favorable direction," the report says.
An hour north from Austin, Killeen-Temple ranked the No. 8 fastest-growing small metro area. Killeen-Temple is expected to climb 7.35 percent from 479,286 residents to 514,514 by 2028.