Utah’s population growth continued to soar in 2011. The Beehive State holds the nation’s highest fertility and birth rates, highest life expectancy rate and, for the 21st consecutive year, leads the nation’s net in-migration.
Following a sustained period of precipitous growth, Utah’s 2011 total population stood at an estimated 2,817,222. The state’s 1.9-percent population growth, though considerably lower than the record 2007 level of 3.2 percent, was still the third-highest in the U.S., behind only the District of Columbia (2.7 percent) and Texas (2.1 percent).
The Governor’s Office of Planning and Budget projects that natural increase (number of births less number of deaths) will add 39,000 people to Utah’s population in 2012, while net in migration will bring 5,000 more residents to the state.
After experiencing annual population growth of 2.7 percent in the decade beginning in 2000, the U.S. Census anticipates sustained growth in Utah to continue in future decades. The state’s population is projected to reach 3.7 million in 2020, 4.4 million in 2030, and 6.8 million in 2060. The projected growth rate of 1.3 percent, though still lower than that of the past decade, is twice the projected national rate.
- Utah’s average household size, 3.10 persons, is the largest in the U.S.
- Utah’s fertility rate of 2.60 per woman ranks first nationally.
- Utah’s median age of 29.2 is the youngest in the U.S.
- Utah ranks first nationally in percentage of family households (71.4 percent) and married couple families (60.5 percent).
- Approximately 75 percent of Utah’s populace lives in Salt Lake, Utah, Davis and Weber counties.
Population Facts about the Beehive State
- Population of 2,763,885, up 23.8 percent from 2000 (compared to 9.7 percent growth nationwide)
- 9.5 percent of Utah’s population under 5 years old (nation: 6.5 percent)
- 31.5 percent of Utahns under 18 years old (nation: 24 percent)
- Females 49.8 percent (nation: 50.8 percent)
- White persons (census descriptions): 86.1 percent (nation: 72.4 percent)
- Black persons: 1.1 percent (nation: 12.6 percent)
- Asian persons: 2.0 percent (nation: 4.8 percent)
- American Indian or Alaskan native: 1.2 percent (nation: 0.9 percent)
- Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander: 0.9 percent (nation: 0.2 percent)
- Hispanic or Latino origin: 13.0 percent (nation: 16.3 percent)
Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Utah’s Five Fastest-growing Cities
- Saratoga Springs – 1672.8%
- Herriman – 1330.4%
- Eagle Mountain – 892.8%
- Cedar Hills – 216.6%
- Syracuse – 158.9%
Source: U.S. Census Bureau
Utah Population Projection
Source: Governor’s Office of Planning and Budget
America’s Most Youthful State
Utah’s unique age structure contributes to the state’s energetic, productive lifestyle.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Utah ranks as the youngest state in the nation, with a median age of 29.2—a major factor in the state’s longterm economic viability, together with its smart workforce, excellence in higher education and perennially strong economic and fiscal performance.
The fertility rate in Utah—an average of 2.6 per Utah woman—is the highest of any U.S. state. Utah ranks first in the percentage of its population that is pre-school age (9.5 percent), and within the K-12 ages of 5 to 17 (22.0 percent). Conversely, the state has the smallest per-capita workingage (18-64) population (59.5 percent) and the second-smallest retirementage population (9.0 percent).
Utah continues to have the largest household size in the country, with 3.10 persons per household. Utah also ranks first nationally in percentage of family households (71.4 percent) and married couple families (60.5 percent).
Utah’s population continues to diversify, with peoples from many nations and cultures drawn to the quality of life and the vibrant entrepreneurial environment the state fosters. Growth in the state’s Hispanic population is particularly strong. Hispanics now make up 13 percent of Utah’s population—a 78 percent increase over the 2000 count by the U.S. Census Bureau. The number and revenue growth of Hispanic-owned businesses in Utah are consistently among the fastest in the nation.
Utah’s White (including Hispanic) population equal’s 92.9 percent of the state’s total population, but the state is home to a diverse populace, including Asian, 2.0 percent; American Indian and Alaska Native, 1.4 percent, Black or African American, 1.3 percent; and Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, 0.8 percent, according to the Census Bureau.
Utah’s Largest Cities and Counties
According to the 2010 Census (the most recent available for city data), Salt Lake City remains the state’s largest city with a population of 186,440, followed by West Valley City with 129,480 residents; Provo with 112,488; fast-growing West Jordan at 103,712; Orem, at 88,328 residents, rounds out five largest cities. The Beehive State’s next five largest communities are Sandy, 87,461; Ogden, 82,825; St. George, 72,897; Layton, 67,311; and Taylorsville, 58,652.
The vast majority (nearly 75 percent) of Utah’s population is still heavily clustered in four urban counties at the base of the Wasatch Mountains: Salt Lake, 1,029,655 residents in 2010; Utah, 516,564; Davis, 306,479; and Weber, 231,236. Utah’s fifth-most-populous county is Washington County in the southwestern corner of the state, with 138,115 residents.
Utah’s fastest-growing cities, clustered along the Wasatch Front and Washington County, are led by Saratoga Springs, with its meteoric 1,672.8-percent growth rate from 2000-2010; and Herriman, at 1,330.4 percent. These two outliers are followed by Eagle Mountain, 892.8 percent; Cedar Hills, 216.6 percent; Syracuse, 158.9 percent; West Haven, 158.4 percent; Lehi, 149.1 percent; Washington, 129.2 percent; Highland, 90.0 percent; and Santaquin, 88.8 percent.
The five fastest-growing counties during this same period were mountainous Wasatch County, on the Wasatch Back, at 54.7 percent; Washington County, in Utah’s southwestern red rock country, 52.9 percent; Tooele County in the northwestern part of the state, 42.9 percent; Utah County, 40.2 percent; and Iron County in southwestern Utah, 36.2 percent.