Treasure Valley Population Growth

By
Real Estate Agent with Coldwell Banker Tomlinson Group
SE Boise

Earlier this week the Census Bureau released new figures for population growth in U.S. counties.  It has previously released figures that show that Arizona, Nevada, and Idaho were the three fastest growing states by percentage increase in the United States between mid 2005 and mid 2006 (3.6, 3.5, and 2.6 percent).  Idaho has been the third fastest growing state for two years in a row now.


The county numbers released this week show Ada county to be the fourth fastest growing county in the state, by percentage.  Ada's growth of 13,617 last year was a 3.9 percent increase.  Valley county (think McCall) was first with 6.3 percent, followed by Canyon (Nampa-Caldwell) with 5 percent, and Teton (Driggs, on the eastern edge of the state) with 4.6 percent in third place.  Canyon county made it to 39th on the list of 100 fastest growing counties in America, the only county in Idaho on the list.


The Treasure Valley area of Southwest Idaho has approximately 41 percent of the state's population... that's more than 607,000 people!  Of that number, Ada and Canyon counties make up more than 532,000 of those folks.  Growth in these two counties has been very strong for more than a decade now, with a 23 percent increase just since 2000!  And as the word gets out about all that Boise and the Treasure Valley has to offer, there is no reason for these growth trends not to continue.
 

 

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Anonymous
Jeff Brown

This posts lists many of the reasons why I'm not only bringing my clients to Boise, but opening an office their this year.

The path to Boise seems to be smooth and paved.

Mar 24, 2007 02:42 PM #1
Rainer
32,927
Bill Williams
Coldwell Banker Tomlinson Group - Boise, ID

Jeff, currently, all of my active contacts are from out of state... Arizona, Washington, California.  They are about equally weighted between younger folks being transferred in and older folks scaling back, simplifying, or retiring.  It's exciting to deal with them because they see what you and I see, the future.  It seems like the people who are most hesitant are some who have lived here the longest, and don't see "the vision".

Opening an office, eh?  As my younger clients would say, kewl! 

Mar 26, 2007 06:50 AM #2
Anonymous
Skylar Swinford
I live in Idaho (think McCall) and love it. I am currently attending college outside the state, but I frequently return home to visit. My favorite aspect of returning home to my beautiful state is seeing the sprawling development that is occurring all around.  I am constantly impressed by the speed worthless scenic land can be turned into extensive housing tracks.  Once productive and fertile farmland does far more for the state's culture and economy when it serves as the foundation for popular box stores. I am also excited by all of the development of the Boise foothills.  Green lawns replacing the dry desert sagebrush will protect the beautiful city of Boise from any future wildfire threats. Above all, I am most excited about the new ski resort near my home in Valley County and all the progress that has accompanied it. Things have been very different in this valley. One thing that really catches my attention is the transformation of an ugly irrigation reservoir into beautiful Lake Cascade...sadly further inspection proved a name change can't teach an old dog new tricks. Despite my disappointment with Cascade Reservoir, I mean "lake", there are many changes that I absolutely love.  The peacefulness and serenity that used to characterize the valley is finally leaving after all these years. I don't know how I survived the family like community and slow pace of McCall for so long.  I hope every one from Arizona, Washington, and California can discover my home and bring more progress.  One finally note, please allow me to be the first to apologize on behalf of my community for the lack of a nearby McDonalds or Walmart.  If you need fast food or cheap toothpaste you will need to pack it!
Apr 13, 2007 06:15 PM #3
Rainer
32,927
Bill Williams
Coldwell Banker Tomlinson Group - Boise, ID

Thanks for taking time to contribute Skylar.  Growth and progress are difficult subjects.  What would your suggestion be?  Staying the same is NOT an option... it never has been.

Idaho has for years exported its young people to other states for education, and for jobs, which it wasn't able to provide here in the quantity or the quality that was necessary.  Health care lagged most of the rest of the nation as well.  While progress is always a two-sided story, simply complaining about it is never the right answer.

A lot of the folks moving here are those young people who moved away twenty and thirty years ago.  My wife is one of them.  They are bringing with them equity, resources, enthusiasm, and a strong desire to make the changes good ones.  When you are finished with your education, you can come back and join us.  Our state will finally have an economy that will provide you a decent living, and it is still the best place I can think of to live.

Apr 14, 2007 07:31 PM #4
Anonymous
Keith Bickford

Mr. Williams, your first comment that change is inevitable is undisputable.  However, why must we push for sprawl?  The answer is money in the pockets of realtors.  But where will Mr. Realtor take his grandchildren to camp when there is no 'outdoors' outside of protected wilderness unavailable to many.  On a side note, I support wilderness for its many advantages.  The recent stride to create a metropolis of Southfork landing is absurd.  I read articles that discuss 'the easy commute to Boise'.  That won't be an easy commute once the developments along 55 are completed.  This commute will resemble those of commutes into the LA Basin and the Phoenix proper.  40 miles takes several hours.  How will the current residents of Horseshoe Bend and Garden Valley enjoy this new commute the realty market pushed so hard to create.  What about the real estate magazine covers of pristine mountains and meadows?  Perhaps we should 'model' the future look of the valleys and meadows with megaburbs and show those pictures instead.  100 years from now we will all be gone - and so will your money.  But Idaho will still be here.  Our actions today will shape the Idaho of tomorrow.  Do we want it to look like Phoenix?  Or the Idaho we know and love.

Oct 27, 2007 12:03 AM #5
Rainer
32,927
Bill Williams
Coldwell Banker Tomlinson Group - Boise, ID

Keith, I hunt and fish here too.  Idaho has the largest percentage of open/wilderness/public land of any of the lower 48 states, if I'm remembering correctly.  And your simple argument that it is the greedy Realtors screwing it up for everyone by causing sprawl is one I hear often.  I'll challenge you the same way I challenged Skylar.

What do YOU propose we do about it?  How far are you willing to take the laws regulating private property?  Are you willing to have the government tell Farmer Joe that he cannot sell his 240 acres to whoever he wants to, now that he can no longer profitably (or more likely physically) farm it?  If you're willing to allow him to sell, are you going to regulate who he might sell it to?  The Nature Conservancy, but not the local duck club?  A luxury home builder, but not Hubble or CBH?  Nordstroms, but not Wal-Mart?

By the way, do you own any property in Garden Valley, or Horseshoe Bend?  No?  I think it is for them to say what they will or won't allow.  Sprawl is a function of poor planning and weak local government, it has absolutely NOTHING to do with greedy Realtor.  My point here is that growth happens.  It is up to YOU, and ME, and all of our neighbors to decide what that growth will look like.  Building a fence around Idaho and pulling in the "Welcome" mat is not the answer, even if you could do it.  So instead of complaining, start presenting some answers.

Here's an idea for you, since you seem to appreciate the outdoors.  Why not get 8 or 10 buddies together, study some acreage, and buy a piece of 240 or 360 acres?  Post it, build a clubhouse on it, and make it a private or invitation only hunting/wildlife preserve... I know a man who did just that, and there are plenty of parcels around, if you have the courage to do it.  That is an idea.  And I'll be happy to help you with the real estate part of it  ;-)  Don't mention it, it's what we greedy Realtors do.

Nov 06, 2007 12:24 PM #6
Anonymous
Keith Bickford

Hello again,

I agree that we cannot and should not fence off Idaho or prevent the sale of lands to hinder growth. However, should we promote the sales the way we do?  Doing so ignores the many things we have come to learn over the last several years.  It is unwise, unsustainable, unsafe, and counterproductive to live such great distances from our daily work place.  Of course there are no laws to stop it, it is just common sense.  I would not sell a three legged horse to a race jockey.

it is the simple fact that we promote areas such as Garden Valley as a great commute for Boise residents; and the fact that those who often do not reside in the area ignore the opinions of the local residents.  Yes, Mr. Joe Farmer should be able to sell his land, and you have the right to help him sell it for a profit.  But I do not understand how we can say with a straight face that it is a good idea for Idaho newcomers to buy in garden valley to work in Boise.  Would you make that commute knowingly contributing greatly to the pollution and oil consumption this nation is working so hard to minimize?  Our nation is making choices to minimize our impact on the environment, and some folks are knowingly working against these efforts in order to live their dreams of wealth.  Anyone who knows Idaho knows it is very unsafe in the winter, Many deer are killed annually on these roads, and the numbers will only increase, and there is no shortage of human deaths on this road either.

Cheerio,

Keith

Nov 17, 2008 05:24 PM #7
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