NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — There are signs of rapid growth throughout Nashville, but if you need more proof the population is increasing, the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce has data to back it up.
According to the Census Bureau, Nashville’s population increased by 35,624 people last year, which averages to 98 people per day. The figures make the Nashville area’s growth the 10th highest among 56 other metros with a population of at least one million, the research said.
📧 Have breaking come to you: Subscribe to News 2 email alerts →
“To put that in context, if you look at the top 10 cities, we’re in that top 10, so that puts us in the same conversation as cities like Austin, Tampa, Dallas; places where their economy is really thriving,” Bishoy Mikhail, Vice President of Research for the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, said.
Middle Tennessee hasn’t seen this amount of growth since 2016.
The Nashville area is now home to more than two million people, according to the chamber. The area includes Davidson, Williamson, Maury, Hickman, Dickson, Cheatham, Robertson, Sumner, Macon, Trousdale, Smith, Wilson, Rutherford, and Cannon counties.
| READ MORE | Latest headlines from Nashville and Davidson County
Mikhail told News 2 the growth is good news for Nashville’s workforce shortage.
“Companies are struggling to find workforce to fill their positions,” Mikhail said. “The latest numbers show that for every unemployed person who is looking for work, there are about two job openings, so it’s really critical that this number remains large for us trying to grow our local population.”
Cities across the greater Nashville area are approving developments to keep up with the exponential growth, including Lebanon.
The Lebanon city council unanimously approved a development set to go next to Lebanon High School with 346 homes and 30,000 square feet of commercial space, called Blue Hickory.
“I think it’s important in the continuing development of Lebanon that we see more restaurant, more retail in our commercial development,” said Councilor Chris Crowell, who represents Ward 4.
The development plan has been in the works for 1.5 years, according to Crowell. He said the developer has made many changes to the plan to compromise with the city, including reducing the number of homes from 500 to 346, and adding road improvements and sidewalks.
However, some neighbors took to social media to express their concerns about the development and growth, citing infrastructure problems.
Mikhail told News 2 growth can pay for the infrastructure improvements needed thanks to the increasing tax base. “A lot of the challenges people say come with growth can also be addressed by having a larger tax base that can contribute to helping fund those initiatives.”