COLORADO (KRDO) – Fewer people are loading the U-Haul to move to Colorado, according to Census records analyzed by the state demographics office.
According to our press partners in Denver, 27,337 people moved to Colorado in 2020. Just a year later, data shows the number of people moving to the state has dropped even further to 14,731 people. Compare that data to six years ago, when a total of 68,844 people moved to Colorado.
“I think that’s something we have to prepare for,” said state demographer Elizabeth Garner. “To me, that makes a bit of sense. We’ve seen the whole of the United States slow down in terms of growth.”
Garner said a decrease in births, an increase in deaths and net migration are factors contributing to slowing population growth in Colorado.
“So it’s really about thinking more strategically about ‘how can we compete when things start to slow down? And then there will be some states, and parts of states, that are already slowing down where we just have to think about this idea of strategic shrinking. How to slow down gracefully? Still fund all the things we love, but with a slower growing tax base or a declining tax base,” she said.
“The parts of Colorado that should be thinking about strategic reduction and making plans for what that means,” Garner said.
However, Metropolitan State University economics professor Kishore Kulkarni doesn’t see much movement during the pandemic.
“I see it’s not a major problem,” Kishore Kulkarni said. “This is just a blip in the usual trend of a high influx of people into Colorado.”
Garner said he took the pandemic into account when analyzing the data.
“So we know it’s been a tough year,” she said. “However, the 2020 results weren’t that different from what we expected, so I don’t know if 2020 was that bad.”
By 2050, Garner’s office predicts that Colorado’s population will increase by 1.8 million people.
“I think what makes it weird is that people don’t feel it,” she said. “And that’s because we have what I would call a lot of visitors.”