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What Idaho’s population growth means for the Magic Valley

“Where talent goes, companies go.”
Updated: Jun. 14, 2021 at 8:28 PM MDT
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TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — The Gem State has the fastest growth rate in the country, seeing a population jump of 2.1%, and much of that growth has been seen in the state’s urban areas.

Idaho now has eight cities with populations larger than 50,000 with one of those being Twin Falls which has seen a 16.1% increase since the last census.

“Oh, I think it’s a positive. I think it helps with the economy and the value of homes going up, so that’s great,” said lifelong Twin Falls resident Ginny Meredith. “I think it’s cool to see everything that’s grown but it’s kind of crazy to see places that were just fielded when I was a kid, where we could go and play, and now there are houses and buildings.”

Magic Valley economic experts believe that this population growth will lead to more business development, with companies eyeing Twin Falls for potential headquarters.

“Historically people follow companies but now we’ve been seeing a trend over the past few years that companies are following people,” said Connie Stopher of Southern Idaho Economic Development. “So, where talent goes, companies go.”

Stopher says population growth and corresponding business development will have pros, like higher wages, and cons, like possible over development. But Twin Falls and should look to the future to be sure the city can keep up.

“It is exciting,” said Stopher, “but it is important to look not just at this particular year but ten years in the future because sometimes it takes that long to get new infrastructure and all of that in place.”

The draw of Twin Falls has much to do with its natural beauty and small-town feel according to resident Ginny Meredith and she just hopes it stays that way.

“The only thing that probably makes me nervous is just the fact that a lot of the beauty is the big open fields and a lot of the agriculture and stuff like that,” said Meredith. “I think with a lot of growth sometimes I worry that there’s going to be so much growth that we’re going to start losing the stuff that makes it beautiful.”

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