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Source: Arizona Office of Employment and Population Statistics and UsEconomicResearch.com.

Population

Estimates. The population of the SEAGO Region is 228,412 as of 2015, according to estimates by Arizona’s Office of Employment and Population Statistics. The largest share of the population (56%) resides in Cochise County and the smallest share (5%) resides in Greenlee County. From 2010 to 2015, the Region’s population grew by 1.6%—less than a third of the statewide rate of growth of 5.6%. Greenlee County saw the fastest population growth in the Region from 2010 to 2015 at 25.1%. The town of Clifton in Greenlee County saw the fastest growth of any municipality in the Region at nearly 40%. The population growth in Greenlee County and the town of Clifton is a result of extensive expansion of the open pit copper mine operated by Freeport-McMoRan. Between 2010 and 2015 the mine experienced an expansion investment of more than $1B by Freeport-McMoRan. The combination of contractors engaged in the mine expansion and increased number of operational employees at the mine was the primary cause of the significant population growth. Cochise County was the only county in the Region to see its population decline from 2010 to 2015 (-1.8%) with all municipalities in the county losing population except Sierra Vista (2.3%) due to annexation growth. The population decline in Cochise County is largely attributable to employment changes at Fort Huachuca Army instillation. The changes in Fort Huachuca’s mission and the federal sequestration resulted in a loss of civilian jobs at the base and a reduction of defense contractors servicing the base. Many employees employed in those capacities left the area in pursuit of other employment.

Projections. The Region’s population is projected to grow at a slower rate than statewide in both the short term (2015-2020) and long term (2015-2050). From 2015 to 2020, the Region’s population is projected to grow by 4.1% (less than half the pace of the 8.7% growth projected for all of Arizona). From 2015 to 2020, Santa Cruz County is projected to see the fastest population growth in the Region (7.2%) while Greenlee County is projected to grow the slowest (1.4%). Over the longer term, from 2015 to 2050, Graham County is projected to see the most rapid population growth (40.9%) and Greenlee County is projected to grow slowest (0.4%). Population growth in rural areas is difficult to forecast over a long term, and is largely contingent on job growth in the area. Population growth in urban areas, with a consistent record of job growth, is typically easier to forecast. However, an indicator of population growth in the SEAGO Region is the growing influx of retirees attracted to the environment and climate of the Region. Indicative of that growing retirement population is a current “active adult community” development in process in Cochise County. The proposed project includes the development of 27,000 homes with associated commercial and service oriented development. The build-out period for the project is 20 years.


Source: Arizona Office of Employment and Population Statistics and UsEconomicResearch.com.

Source: Arizona Office of Employment and Population Statistics and UsEconomicResearch.com

Source: Arizona Office of Employment and Population Statistics and UsEconomicResearch.com

Source: Arizona Office of Employment and Population Statistics and UsEconomicResearch.com

Source: Arizona Office of Employment and Population Statistics and UsEconomicResearch.com