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The Journal Gazette

Friday, March 25, 2016 10:01 pm

Numbers set path on the road to a million

Having second thoughts about the Regional Cities Initiative?

You shouldn’t. New figures from the U.S. Census Bureau confirm the need to do something about population loss outside the Indianapolis metropolitan area. Among the 92 counties, 54 declined in population last year.

In northeast Indiana, population losses were seen in Whitley, Steuben, Huntington and Wabash counties. Population was pretty much stagnant in DeKalb, Noble and Kosciusko counties. The news was better for Allen, Wells, Adams and LaGrange counties, where slight gains were seen.

“The three-county Fort Wayne area is the state’s second-largest metro area with 429,820 residents,” according to a data analysis from the Indiana Business Research Center at Indiana University in Bloomington.

“The Fort Wayne metro area posted a 0.7 percent increase in 2015, ranking as the 125th-largest metro area in the nation.”

Statewide, however, the population gain of 21,800 residents was far off the average annual increase of 40,332 residents Indiana saw between 2000 and 2010.