Here we grow again! For the second year in a row, New Braunfels has been ranked the second fastest growing city in the United States based on information from the U.S. Census Bureau. Between the period of July 2017 and July 2018, New Braunfels grew by 7.2 percent for a total population of 84,612.
While being on the list of the 15 fastest growing cities (by percentage) is an honor and does make for a great talking point, there are an abundance of planning items occurring behind the scenes.
How can you plan for growth? Will the roads and other public infrastructure grow too? The City of New Braunfels accomplished the monumental task of creating a roadmap for the future through the city comprehensive plan, “Envision New Braunfels: A Special Place by Design,” which was adopted in 2018. While there was no crystal ball or tarot card reader that was enlisted to help design the future, many public meetings were held. During these meetings the public created goals for the city, discussed strategies to accomplish these goals, and finally created policy to achieve these goals. The end result provided a plan for future growth.
The growth of the City will undoubtedly lead to a higher demand for services and infrastructure. “If you look at the 5,460 new citizens, the last census told us that the average household was 2.77 people, so that means — last year we needed 1,971 dwelling units for those people,” said Chamber President Michael Meek.
New Braunfels recognizes this demand and carefully plans for the likelihood that we remain on this list of fastest growing cities, including the 2019 Bond Program passed by voters in May of 2019. The 2019 Bond agenda items spoke largely of the City’s commitment to remain welcoming while still providing the great City services that most residents have become accustomed to. It is not an easy job, and some of the decisions are tough, but the community continues to make great decisions that are both attractive to resident newcomers as well as business relocations. The City will continue to strive to be the place where you can live, work and play.
The additional population growth has big impacts on the business community too. This added population increases the residential tax base, new residential homes add more commercial and retail needs, and more people means more jobs are needed. The New Braunfels Economic Development Council (City, Chamber, County, NBU) works hard to recruit those businesses to New Braunfels in order to sustain and encourage the growth. The number one item that is trending inside of economic development is people and workforce, not just numerically. People are looking for quality and workforce; luckily we have them both in New Braunfels!