No shock that Lafayette County in No. 1 in growth

Published 10:24 am Friday, March 31, 2017

It’s no surprise that Lafayette County is the fastest growing in Mississippi in recent years, according to the latest population estimates released by the U.S. Census Bureau.

We won’t have another true census count until 2020 but the estimates from the bureau give an idea of what is occurring in population shifts.

As a general rule, our community is growing at a rate of 1 to 2 percent — a number that’s manageable for growth. Too much too fast, of course, is never a good thing.

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But from July 1, 2015 to July 1, 2016 Lafayette County gained 782 residents, which is positive economically, but not so much that everything here changes overnight.

It certainly feels that way sometimes, with so much construction on campus and new housing developments throughout Lafayette County. The growth, however, has just been a steady stream the past two decades, with a particularly high spike of 3.89 percent between 2011 and 2012.

We know, however, that if Oxford and Lafayette County continue to add another 800 to 1,500 residents each year and those families moving here have babies, and more students come to Ole Miss at the same time, that our community will look totally different in another two decades.

Bigger, yes. And hopefully better.

That’s why planning from our leaders in the community is so important.