The Dallas/ Fort Worth area is the fastest growing metropolitan area in the country, according to new estimates released by the U.S. Census Bureau.
DFW added 131,767 residents from 2017 to 2018.
Phoenix was second with more than 96,000 new residents.
Overall, the Texas population boom continues. The state has four of the Top 10 fastest growing counties in the nation.
An SMU economist says the business-friendly environment in DFW is what's bringing the jobs that are in turn bringing all of the new residents.
Dr. Damien Berry is an ER doctor who recently moved to Dallas from Indiana. He was not surprised to hear that the Dallas/ Fort Worth region is the fastest growing in the country.
“Many people may be familiar with the lack of income tax. That helps out, especially just starting out,” he said. “I can tell why. It's a Thursday. Looking forward to family-friendly activities. Not only Klyde Warren Park, but other things as well.”
SMU Economist Mike Davis says the business-friendly climate makes a big difference.
“You don't move to Dallas unless you have the promise of a job or a pretty good job,” he said.
And on top of the business climate, there is a good natural climate.
“We just had lunch with a friend from Chicago. He said it snowed three days ago,” Davis said. “He's thinking about making a move, too.”
Davis says previous data from the IRS has shown that much of the growth here is coming from the Upper Midwest, particularly cities like Chicago. Census data there showed a decline in population for the fourth year in a row.
“Chicago is a fantastic city, but they have huge problems,” Davis said. “Their taxes are very high. They’re starting to see upticks in crime and general falling apart of infrastructure.”
The draw from California is likely the lower cost of living.
“One thing that helps our cost of living is we have unrestricted land use requirements. They can build houses, apartments and shopping centers that keeps costs low,” Davis said. “If you look especially at places like San Francisco, it's almost impossible to build a new house there. So the existing houses are very, very expensive.”
The census data showed the majority of the growth in the region is going to the suburbs.
Davis says all of the rapid growth year after year means the regional transportation leaders need to plan wisely.