Kaufman County is the fastest-growing county in the United States, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
The county includes cities such as Terrell, Crandall, and Forney.
“We’re seeing tremendous growth in all of the counties surrounding Dallas,” Lloyd Potter, director of the Texas Demographic Center, told The Dallas Morning News. “These counties are largely growing because there’s economic opportunity, meaning that we’re growing jobs in Texas.”
This nearby boom is juxtaposed with a population drop in Dallas. Polling conducted by The Dallas Express in August suggested the blame for that drop lies squarely on the city’s rising crime, as well as homelessness and vagrancy. Citizens continue to voice concerns that the City’s political leaders are not adequately addressing any of these crises.
“I have discussed this with many business leaders and many of them find it difficult to grow their businesses in Dallas [due] to the challenges and bureaucracy of working with the City,” he said. “Why would companies want to move somewhere that makes their life and business more challenging? Being in business is risky enough for most people. The local government can either increase risk or reduce it. The cities that are doing the latter are winning time and time again.”
Dallas is notoriously difficult to build in, and its backlogged permitting process contributes to high building rents and negative growth.
Kaufman County, meanwhile, shows an 18% population boost between 2019 and 2021– increasing from 118,350 to 140,145 residents. Other areas in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex are growing as well, though not as rapidly as Kaufman County.
Donna Simmons, economic development coordinator for Kaufman County, told The Dallas Morning News that the dramatic increase is due mostly to the county’s affordability paired with a relatively short commute to Dallas.
“They see the opportunity to come to the East because it’s much cheaper right now than going North,” Simmons said.