Brace yourselves, North Texans. The 30-county swath known as North Texas is on track to absorb close to 3 million people — more than the population of the modern-day Tampa-St. Petersburg, FL, metro area — over the next 15 years.

A study by LawnStarter indicates that North Texas — whose major cities include Dallas, Fort Worth, Arlington, Plano and Denton — is expected to add 2,923,219 residents from 2015 to 2030. As of 2014, the population of the Tampa-St. Petersburg area was 2,793,814. Our data analysis is based on population projections from the Texas state demographer.

If the state demographer’s crystal ball is right, the population of North Texas would climb from an estimated 7,669,168 in 2015 to a projected 10,592,387 in 2030. That would represent a 15-year increase of 38.1 percent. To put the 2030 figure in perspective, the Chicago, IL, metro area is home to almost 9.5 million people.

Collin County Leads the Charge

North Texas

The borders of North Texas are loosely defined. We went with a 30-county configuration stretching from Cottle County, adjacent to the Texas Panhandle, on the region’s western border to Fannin County, just east of Denison, TX, on the region’s eastern border.

At 80.3 percent, Collin County will lead North Texas in population growth from 2015 to 2030, followed by Rockwall County (75.8 percent), Denton County (74.5 percent) and Kaufman County (73.4 percent), according to our study. Just two counties in North Texas, Cottle and Foard, are projected to lose residents from 2015 to 2030.

In Collin County, the projected bump in population would merely continue a similar trend from 2000 to 2014, county spokesman Tim Wyatt says. Among the factors contributing to Collin County’s growth are:

  • Well-educated workforce. Wyatt says 50 percent of the county’s workers hold at least a bachelor’s degree.
  • Solid tax base. The county’s tax base has increased 11.5 percent in 2015, according to Wyatt. Corporate expansions underway or completed in Collin County include FedEx, Liberty Mutual, State Farm and Toyota.
  • Top-notch schools. In the McKinney School District, for instance, 2014-15 standardized test results outpaced those for the state as a whole.

Summing up Collin County’s economic health, Wyatt says: “While much of the country was wondering how they would climb out of the 2008-2010 recession, we were already climbing out of it.”

Jobs Lure New Residents

Toyota Plano

Toyota is moving its North American headquarters to North Texas.

Lloyd Potter, the state demographer for Texas, says most of the population growth in North Texas is coming from people moving from other areas to Collin County, Denton County and other counties. Outside the urban cores and fast-growing suburban counties in North Texas, counties are seeing slow growth or are even losing population, he says.

“Growth, especially in high-migration areas, is being driven by employment opportunity. Thus, growing economic activity is creating jobs that are attracting migrants,” Potter says.

Below is a table containing 2015 population estimates and 2030 population projections for all 30 counties in North Texas.

CountyPopulation 2015Population 2030Percentage Change
Archer9502106420.11997474215955
Baylor372137220.00026874496103198
Clay11224122780.093905915894512
Collin94967317121830.80291847825515
Cooke40075448160.11830318153462
Cottle15721570-0.0012722646310433
Dallas249685929396450.1773372064662
Denton78909413770900.7451533023949
Ellis1732772670380.54110470518303
Erath39534457870.15816765315931
Fannin35790416030.16241967029897
Foard13551330-0.018450184501845
Grayson1270971485070.16845401543703
Hardeman431347650.10479944354278
Hood56112711750.26844525235244
Hunt933471226410.31381833374399
Jack9382103530.10349605627798
Johnson1677602357300.40516213638531
Kaufman1242382154150.73388979217309
Montague20610229850.1152353226589
Navarro51464641760.24700761697497
Palo Pinto29914349000.1666778097212
Parker1365012201190.61258159280884
Rockwall958291684550.75787079067923
Somervell9436127960.35608308605341
Tarrant195944925328530.29263532758444
Wichita1322791364960.031879587840852
Wilbarger14220161860.13825597749648
Wise66321955380.44053919572986
Young19220215930.12346514047867
TOTAL7669168105923870.38116507553362

Data Sources

www.texascounties.net/statistics/regions.htm
http://osd.texas.gov/Data/TPEPP
www.dshs.state.tx.us/chs/popdat/ST2015.shtm

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