• 59°

Rowan cities and towns see limited population growth

SALISBURY — The population of Charlotte and its immediate neighbors is growing at notable rates, but the same isn’t true for municipalities in Rowan County, according to census estimates released Thursday.

A large portion of North Carolina’s cities lost population last year, including larger ones such as Fayetteville. Meanwhile, cities such as Charlotte and Concord saw population growth rates higher than 2 percent. None of Rowan’s cities show a population loss. However, population growth in Rowan is mostly miniscule. Kannapolis is the only exception.

Census statistics released Thursday show population of municipalities for 2015. When compared to population for 2014, most of Rowan County municipalities turned out a positive growth rate of 0.4 percent. Rockwell — a town of about 2,100 — and Cleveland — a town of less than 900 people — saw an estimated growth rate of 0.5 percent.

Salisbury was among the Rowan County municipalities that saw a 0.4 percent growth rate. In 2014, an estimated 33,880 people lived in the city. The 2015 census statistics estimated 34,017 people lived in Salisbury.

Meanwhile, Kannapolis saw a solid growth rate of 2 percent from 2014 to 2015, according to census numbers. In 2014, Kannapolis had an estimated 42,210 residents. It grew to 46,244 residents in 2015 according to the census.

Most of the city’s residents live in Cabarrus County, where Concord also saw a notable growth rate. In 2014, the city had an estimated 85,525 residents. In 2015, Concord had an estimated 87,696 residents — an increase of 2.5 percent. Statesville, Mooresville and Mocksville also saw a larger estimated growth rate than Salisbury, according to Thursday’s census statistics.

When asked about the census numbers, Salisbury Mayor Karen Alexander was upbeat about the small growth rate.

“While we would want that kind of growth, we would not be in line for it as quickly as either (Kannapolis or Concord),” Alexander said. “I think that what we are doing, with all of the policy changes and working together and collaborating and anticipating growth is positive and hasn’t happened before.”

She said it’s logical that Concord — an immediate neighbor to Charlotte — and Kannapolis — closer to Charlotte than Salisbury — would see population increases sooner than Salisbury or cities to the north. It’s also unrealistic to think an elected official could see massive population growth numbers in one city council term — two years — or a county commissioners term — four years.

Alexander said Salisbury is planning for growth in a “state of the art” manner. One example she cited is the ability for developers to pay an extra fee to have building plans approved within 24 hours. She also repeated cited collaboration and positive relationships between government officials in Rowan.

The census numbers released Thursday fall in line with what Rowan saw in March, when the U.S. Census Bureau released population numbers for counties. From 2014 to 2015, Rowan County saw an estimated growth rate of 0.3 percent.

Contact reporter Josh Bergeron at 704-797-4246.

Comments

Local

Locals to be inducted into NC Military Veterans Hall of Fame

Business

Fall fun, with a twist: Patterson Farm adjusts to guidelines, offers new version of traditional events

Nation/World

Sayers, Piccolo friendship lives on in ‘Brian’s Song’

Education

Partners in learning passes last year’s special needs fashion show fundraiser with all-virtual event

Education

Shoutouts

Elections

Former history teacher to use ‘working knowledge of the issues’ in state House race

Business

Chamber adds more than 50 new businesses during Total Resource Campaign

Education

School board candidates for Salisbury seat split on consolidation

Education

Virtually no internet: Rural NC families struggle with online access for school-age children

Education

Horizons Unlimited taking learning to students this semester

Nation/World

NTSB: Pilot’s actions likely caused Earnhardt Jr. plane crash

Nation/World

2 Louisville officers shot amid Breonna Taylor protests

Coronavirus

Seven new COVID-19 positives reported at Piedmont Correctional

Crime

Blotter: Police respond to shots fired call outside of Salisbury home

Coronavirus

Rowan tied for fifth among counties for most COVID-19 deaths

Health

‘Nudge from God’: 10 years after diagnosis, Rockwell man to receive kidney from live donor

Crime

Salisbury police warn residents after increased trailer thefts

Education

Elon heightens alert as 32 test positive; Wake Forest in good shape to continue instruction as is

Cleveland

Corn picker catches fire at Knox Farm, destroying nearly eight acres

Nation/World

House easily passes stopgap funding bill, averting shutdown

News

Supreme Court vacancy looms large in 2nd NC Senate debate

Coronavirus

Additional COVID-19 death reported in Rowan; Cooper announces small business relief

Crime

Asheville man charged with heroin possession following traffic checkpoint

Education

Susan Cox conceding school board race, putting support behind opponent