Grand Rapids, Michigan (PRWEB) March 21, 2013
West Michigan continues to be the bright spot of the state, with a recent U.S. Census report pegging the Grand Rapids Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) with over 1 million residents, making it the fastest growing metro area in Michigan.
This new information is bound to open new doors, according to leaders of West Michigan’s economic development organization The Right Place, Inc.
“Grand Rapids’ metropolitan area has exceeded 1,000,000 in population, ranking us as the 52nd most populous metro in the country, and the fastest growing region in the state,” said Birgit Klohs, President and CEO, The Right Place, Inc. “This puts West Michigan in a new league for economic development; one that will bring new interest and growth to our region."
This announcement comes as a result of a March 14 report from the U.S. Census defining new metropolitan areas across the nation.
According to the report, the Grand Rapids-Wyoming MSA now boasts a total population of 1,005,648, making West Michigan the fastest growing metro area in the State of Michigan. West Michigan also remains the second-largest metro in the state.
Complementing the new MSA, the U.S. Census report including updated information on the often overlooked Grand Rapids-Wyoming Combined Statistical Area (CSA), which now includes eight counties and nearly 1.4 million people.
This news adds to an impressive list of recent major business growth announcements over the past year in West Michigan. Most recently, Dallas-based Southwest Airlines announced that the carrier will begin service to Grand Rapids’ Gerald R. Ford International Airport beginning in early August 2013.
Right Place, Inc. officials acknowledge this new MSA data will take time to circulate, but they stand confident that larger companies will take notice.
“With over 1,000,000 MSA population, West Michigan is now on the radar of new national and international brands,” said Michelle Van Dyke, Regional President, Fifth Third Bank. “Our population is up, unemployment is down, companies are investing, and disposable income is increasing – we’re a growing region.”
Michigan metro area growth, 2011 to 2012
New Grand Rapids MSA: 2012 population
Kent County: 614,462
Ottawa County: 269,099
Montcalm County: 63,097
Barry County: 58,990
Former Grand Rapids MSA: 2010 population
Kent County: 602, 622
Ionia County: 63,905
Newaygo County: 48,460
Barry County: 59,173
About The Right Place, Inc.
The Right Place, Inc. is a regional non-profit economic development organization founded in 1985 and supported through investments from the private and public sector. Its mission is to promote economic growth in the areas of quality employment, productivity and technology in West Michigan by developing jobs through leading business retention, expansion and attraction efforts. For more information visit: http://www.rightplace.org