Everything tagged

Latest from The Spokesman-Review

Post Falls Leads Local Growth

Post Falls led local cities in population growth from 2012 to 2013, according to a report released on Thursday by the Idaho Department of Labor. Post Falls grew 2.5 percent — from 28,650 residents in 2012 to 29,357 in 2013. "From a city and bank perspective, we're seeing the economy firm up," said Post Falls Mayor Ron Jacobson, who is also a senior vice president of Inland Northwest Bank. "It's still not as strong as we'd like to see, but at the same token you don't want to see rampant growth because that's difficult keeping up with." Jacobson said he's not surprised at the growth rate because Post Falls, the state's 10th-largest city, has affordable housing and the city has the room to grow onto the Rathdrum Prairie. Post Falls' population growth was the ninth-largest among all cities in the state. Star grew 6.7 percent, topping all cities. Coeur d'Alene grew 1.8 percent from 45,592 to 46,402. It is the state's seventh-largest city/Brian Walker, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.

Question: Are you happy with the way Kootenai County is growing?

Time-lapse video of human impact


This feature is one of the more impressive combinations of cool and scary I've seen in quite some time. These time-lapse satellite photos from the Atlantic Monthly let you create an animated look at the impacts of human activity from 1984 to 2012 on any corner of the globe - and that includes Spokane County. 

It's interesting timing. As reported in the AP last Thursday, the United Nations forecast that the world’s population will increase from 7.2 billion to 8.1 billion in 2025, with most growth in developing countries and more than half in Africa. By 2050, it will reach 9.6 billion.

Check it out HERE.

County Population Up Nearly 1%

Jen Franklin doesn't want Kootenai County to get too big, but small population increases are fine. "If we grow a little, that's always a good sign," the Post Falls woman said outside the Post Falls Library on Thursday. "I think small, gradual growth is healthy … as long as work is available." Kootenai's population rose 0.89 percent from 141,103 in June 2011 to 142,357 June 2012, according to data released on Thursday by the U.S. Census Bureau. While that's a far cry from the 3 to 5 percent gains that were common before the recession, some metropolitan areas, including Boise and Gem counties, both part of the Boise area, had population declines/Brian Walker, Coeur d'Alene Press. More here.

Question: Do you think Kootenai County has too many people living in it?

Friday Quote: Jacques Cousteau

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

"We have to prepare for what life could become in 40 years. We need to outline what is possible and what is impossible with the non-renewable resources of the Earth. What role will technological improvement play? Taking all this into account, what kind of life can we produce in the best way for 10 billion people? That's a problem that needs to be solved."

Huetter Grew Most Percentagewise

Idaho's largest cities are growing at about three times the pace of its smaller communities, according to new population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau. As of July 1, 2011, Idaho's estimated population was 1,584,985, up 13,883 or 0.9 percent from the year before. The state's 10 largest cities accounted for 9,541 of that increase, according to the agency. They grew at the rate of 1.4 percent, compared to a 0.48 percent growth rate for the 190 smaller communities it tracks. The bureau released its 2011 city and town population estimates for all states Thursday. Idaho doesn't try to provide more up-to-date estimates. Washington, which tracks population data independently, released it 2012 population estimates last week. Huetter, a tiny community on the outskirts of Coeur d'Alene, had the highest population growth in the state last year, according to the census estimates. It grew by 2 percent, or two people/William Spence, Lewiston Tribune. More here.

Question: How would you rate the size of your North Idaho community: too big? too small? just right?

Spokane stays ahead of Tacoma in population

OLYMPIA — The honor of the Avis of Washington population goes once again to Spokane.

The state Office of Financial Management released its annual population estimates today, which show overall population is up slightly, pretty much all around the state.

Seattle, of course, is the largest city. Spokane is No. 2, with an estimated 210,000. Tacoma is third at 199,600. For more numbers, check out this story on the main webpage.

The race to place sometimes sets off a competition between some newspaper columnists in the two cities. Spin Control has not engaged in denigrating Tacoma in the past, and will refrain from doing so now. But we can't speak for some of our ink-stained brethren.

Spokane Remains Washington’s No. 2

Washington grew slowly — less than 1 percent — in the last year from a slight increase in people moving into the state, the Office of Financial Management said today. The annual estimate of state population said net migration, the difference between the number of people moving in and those moving out, had been falling since 2007, but that turned around in 2011 for a slight uptick. For the year ending April 1, the state gained an estimated 49,870 persons, making the overall population 6,817,770, OFM said. Seattle is the largest city, with an estimated population of 616,500. Spokane remains second, at 210.000, ahead of Tacoma at 199,600. The City of Spokane Valley remains the state’s 10th largest, with 90,550/Jim Camden, SR. More here. (Christopher Anderson SR file photo)

Question: Izzit just me, or is Spokane proud to be Washington state's equivalent of Avis?

Rural Idaho loses population

Population decline in rural Idaho intensified in 2011, new U.S. Census Bureau estimates show.

More people left the state’s rural areas between mid-2010 and mid-2011, and more counties lost population than at any other time since the 1980s. Eighteen of the 33 rural counties saw population declines.

In the Idaho Panhandle, Benewah, Bonner, Boundary and Shoshone counties all lost population between July 1, 2010, and July 1, 2011, according to Census Bureau estimates. Kootenai County gained about 2,200 residents, or 1.6 percent, in the same period.

Statewide population rose 13,883 – almost entirely in 11 urban counties, the figures show.

Nine counties posted more deaths than births during the one-year period. They include Beneweh, Boundary, Shoshone, Clearwater, Lewis and Nez Perce counties in North Idaho.

Feminist trailblazer Gloria Steinem talks about population and climate change in ABC interview

Gloria Steinem is an amazing journalist and political activist and it's too bad she has to field such awful questions from an interviewer at ABC News' Nature's Edge. Still, she's able to make it worth watching, talking about how climate is connected to women's rights and population. 

  

Slow recovery also spells slower population growth

Washington’s population continues to grow, but at a slower rate.

The 2011 population estimate prepared by the Office of Financial Management places the state's population at 6,767,900 as of April 1. That represents an increase of 43,360, or a growth rate of 0.64 percent from the state’s official 2010 census count.

It's an unexpected slowdown in population growth, the agency said today, and is due to slower than expected economic recovery. That affects both natural population increase (births minus deaths) and migration into Washington.

Migration is a major component of the state’s growth. This year’s net migration is estimated at 6,600, the lowest level in more than two decades, OFM says.

Worker mobility remains low nationwide because of difficulties with selling homes and finding work. Part of the overall decrease in migration is due to a decline in international migration.

Graphic of the day: Spokane sprawl

This is an oldie but goodie: Sightline did a study a few years ago on sprawl in northwest cities. From the below animated graphic it is obvious the outskirts of Spokane are dominated by low-density housing and we also ranked quite low in smart growth. (See that chart HERE.)



















Remember: In Spokane County, 25% of growth in the last decade has happened outside our urban areas and the Urban Growth Area itself has not reached the population it was planned to accommodate. Also, it was estimated that Spokane County is expected to grow by more than a staggering 150,000 people between now and 2031. It becomes obvious: Growth needs to be focused inside our cities and towns to keep them economically vibrant instead of making infrastructure investments for sprawl which increases costs to taxpayers and stretch our urban services so thin.


17 North Idaho Towns Lose Population

Here are the North Idaho towns that lost population from mid-2008 to mid-2009: Bonners Ferry, -29; Clark Fork, -2; East Hope, -1; Kellogg, -33; Kootenai, -1; Mullan, -12; Oldtown, -1; Osburn, -22; Pinehurst, -23; Plummer, -18; Ponderay, -3; Priest River, -7; Smelterville, -10; St. Maries, -41; Tensed, -2; Wallace, -13; Wardner, -3. You can read all the gains and losses for Idaho’s 200 towns in the Idaho Department of Labor census report here.

Question: What size would you say is a perfect population for a town?

CdA Gains 719 People, Post Falls, 594

Coeur d’Alene gained an estimated 719 new residents between 2008 and 2009 to move from the seventh to the sixth largest town in Idaho. Meanwhile, Dalton Gardens gained 15 people in the same time period; Hayden gained 268; Post Falls (9th largest town), 594; Rathdrum, 165; and Sandpoint, 13. Other changes include: Athol, 3 new residents; Fernan, 1; Hauser, 3; Hayden Lake, 7; Huetter, 1; Spirit Lake, 27; State Line, 0; and Worley, 57. Several Shoshone County towns lost population. Overall, Betsy Russell/Eye On Boise reports that a quarter of Idaho’s 200 towns lost population between July 1, 2008, and July 1, 2009. Idaho’s official population is now 1,545,801, or an increase of 18,295, for a 1.2% increase. You can read Betsy’s report (and find a link to the population change of Idaho towns) here.

Question: Are you comfortable with your community’s population?

From another perspective, Tacoma really is Washington’s second city

 

Our good friends at the political blog at The News Tribune in Tacoma appear to be challenging us to a friendly Swivel chart war.

Responding to our bar chart showing that Spokane is the second largest city in the state — with a 2,000-person lead over Tacoma — The News Tribune’s Political Buzz reminded us that Pierce County has a signficant lead over Spokane County and easily claims the highly coveted title of “Washington’s Second County.” We at Spin Control do not dispute this title, only its relevance.

10 Year Urban Growth Area Review

Spokane is in a crucial development stage. As local environmental advocate Kitty Klitzke pointed out, “our county’s Urban Growth Area (UGA) already covers over 89 square miles, this is over 2.5 times larger than the City of Paris, France. And Paris we ain’t. Their population, at 2.2 million is almost 5 times the population of Spokane County.”

All the more reason to focus growth inward. To DTE, Spokane is a city of possibilities, a strained infrastructure due to unsustainable sprawl. In the last decade, 25 percent of county growth has occurred in rural spaces while enough land already existed in the urban growth area to accommodate their projections. So Spokane County and the Metro Cities of Spokane, Spokane Valley, Liberty Lake, Airway Heights, and Millwood are taking steps to evaluate the Metro Urban Growth Area and its ability to continue to accommodate projected population. Tonight, the steering committee for Spokane County and the Metro Cities will host the last of three open houses to seek public input on urban growth and where to go for the next twenty years, 6:30pm-8:00pm at Windsor Elementary School, 5504 W. Hallett Road, in the Community Room.


Important notes from the County:

• Spokane County is expected to grow by more than 150,000 people between now and 2031.

• Over 100,000 of this increase is projected to be in the Metro Cities and the unincorporated Metro Urban Growth Area.

• In 2001, an Urban Growth Area was designated to accommodate the urban growth projected until 2021.

• Every ten years, State law requires Spokane County to take another look at its designated Urban Growth Area and that is the process now underway.

We hope to see you there tonight at this pivotal moment for Spokane’s future.

 

Photo of the day: Vegas baby!

In “What Happened In Vegas,” Sightline editor Clark Williams-Derry shows the progression of a city that grew too fast and new development that overran much of the desert landscape. View HERE.


Cascadia sustainability report card

We’re geeking out on the Cascadia Scorecard from the Sightline Institute, a comprehensive Northwest sustainability report that is frequently updated with graphics and shocking figures.


For the uninitiated, the site studies the region known as “Cascadia,” merely as a transnational cooperative identity because of ecological similarities rather than advocating a new sovereign state. (That would be fun though because of the economy, right?) The scorecard looks at six areas: Health, population, economy, sprawl, wildlife, energy, and pollution.

Let’s look at the worst trend: Energy. Oregon, Idaho, and Washington spent nearly $30 billion for 2008 on imported oil, coal, and natural gas, more than four times our energy spending in just a decade. Scary. That’s rounded to $2,500 per person in the region which upon first glance seems unfathomable but remember the key is we’re buying from somewhere else, straining our local economy, and spending it on gas for homes, business, power plants, and transportation.



Washington: $16.6 Billion. Oregon: $9.4 Billion. Idaho: $3.6 Billion.

But the study demonstrates areas where progress is made and presents solutions like a cap-and-trade. Ultimately, the goal of the report card is to achieve “long and healthy lives, shared economic prosperity, and a legacy of thriving nature” in the Northwest. Can’t argue with that.

scorecard.sightline.org