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Southeast region has highest population growth rate in state

Juneau, Fairbanks still in tight race for 2nd largest city

Posted: January 18, 2013 - 2:06pm  |  Updated: January 20, 2013 - 1:14am

Alaska’s population increased by 3.1 percent — or 22,067 people — from April 2010 to July 2012, based on population estimates released today by the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

Alaska’s growth outpaced the United States as a whole, which grew 1.7 percent over the same period.

Of the 29 boroughs and census areas that existed last year, 26 grew between 2010 and 2012.

The largest population increase was in the Municipality of Anchorage, which grew by 7,016 people. The Matanuska-Susitna Borough grew by 4,806, Fairbanks North Star Borough grew by 2,762, City and Borough of Juneau grew by 1,557, and Kenai Peninsula Borough grew by 1,356.

The population of Juneau is now 32,832, according to the report. While the 2011 population estimate showed it had passed Fairbanks by population to become Alaska’s second-largest city, behind Anchorage, the gap narrowed in 2012 as Fairbanks grew to 32,070.

Among the state’s six economic regions, Anchorage/Mat-Su gained the most over the period. It grew by 11,822 people.

While the Interior region grew by 3,090 people, Southeast logged a strong population growth at 2,759, bringing its total population to 74,423. That marks a 3.8 percent increase for Southeast, versus a 2.8 percent increase for the Interior and a 3.1 percent increase for Anchorage/Mat-Su.

The Gulf Coast grew by 2,122 people, Southwest grew by 1,407 people and Northern grew by 867 people.

A mix of natural increase — births minus deaths — and migration led to the population gains in Anchorage/Mat-Su, the Gulf Coast and Southeast. Natural increase accounted for most of the growth in the Interior, Northern and Southwest regions.

Complete estimates for the state, boroughs and census areas, cities, and census designated places are available on the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development’s Research and Analysis Section Web site: LaborStats.Alaska.Gov.

Estimates for special areas, including census tracts, school districts and Alaska Native Regional Corporations, are also available as are estimates by age and sex for Alaska’s boroughs and census areas.

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