Census Bureau estimates West Michigan’s population is rising


Newly released U.S. Census Bureau estimates show communities in parts of West Michigan with relatively strong population growth compared with other parts of the state.

The figures released yesterday show Kent County, which includes Grand Rapids, added 6,078 people between 2015 and 2016. Wayne County, which includes Detroit, lost 7,696 people between 2015 and 2016.

Demographer Kurt Metzger told the Detroit Free Press that "Kent is a real magnet," with the economy relatively strong in West Michigan.

Washtenaw County, which includes Ann Arbor, added 3,862 people, and Oakland County, which includes Pontiac, increased by 3,696 people.

Xuan Liu, manager of research and data analysis for the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments, told The Detroit News that education resources, a growing knowledge-based economy and quality of life could be draws for Washtenaw County.

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