Skip to main content

Census numbers show Bonneville County growth at a record pace

Visitors make their way along the Greenbelt during the 2018 Great Snake River Greenbelt Duck Race in August 2018. This is the 28th year of the Great Snake River Greenbelt Duck Race

John Roark /

Census numbers show Bonneville County growth at a record pace


Mar 25, 2022

Between 2019 and 2021 Bonneville County saw its largest population gain of any two-year period in the millennium.

Data from the U.S. Census Bureau and archived annual census estimates from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis show that the county’s population grew by 8,644 during that time frame to a total of 127,930. The next highest two-year growth period was between 2006 and 2008 when Bonneville County’s population grew by 5,691.

St. Louis Fed archives show that the county’s largest year-over-year growth since 2000 was between 2009 and 2010 when the county added 3,359 residents, while the 3,304 new residents between 2020 and 2021 was the second most. The lowest year-over-year growth was from 2012 to 2013 when the county added just 619 residents.

The U.S. Census Bureau on Thursday released its Vintage 2021 estimates of population and components of change report. Not surprisingly, two Idaho metropolitan statistical areas (MSA) were among the “Top 10 Metro Areas in Percent Growth,” the report showed. The Coeur d’Alene MSA, which grew by 4.1% from 171,362 in 2020 to 179,789 in 2021, was second on the list, while the Boise MSA, which grew by 3.3% from 764,718 to 795,268, was sixth.

Idaho’s population growth continues a decade-long trend and mirrors what has happened nationally since the start of the pandemic.

Idaho was the second-fastest growing state in the country between 2010 and 2020, according to census data, growing by 17.3% since during the decade. That figure was just shy of Utah’s 18.4% growth.

Additionally, since the start of the pandemic, many people have moved out of “larger, more populous counties to medium and smaller ones,” the report said.

“The patterns we’ve observed in domestic migration shifted in 2021,” said Christine Hartley, assistant division chief for estimates and projections in the Census Bureau’s Population Division, in the release. “Even though over time we’ve seen a higher number of counties with natural decrease and net international migration continuing to decline, in the past year, the contribution of domestic migration counteracted these trends so there were actually more counties growing than losing population.”

Every county in Idaho saw population gains between 2020 and 2021, census estimates showed. The report used numbers from the April 1, 2020, Census and census estimates taken on July 1, 2021.

The local increases are as follows:

• Bingham County grew by 884 residents (1.8%) to 48,876.

• Butte County added 80 residents for a total of 2,654.

• Clark County added two residents for a total of 792.

• Custer County added 153 for a total of 4,428.

• Fremont County added 204 for a total of 13,592.

• Jefferson County added 1,311 for a total of 32,202.

• Lemhi County added 188 for a total of 8,162.

• Madison County added 969 for a total of 53,881.

• Teton County added 637 for a total of 12,267.

Further south, Bannock County added 1,245 to increase to 88,263. The gain was a rebound from 2019 to 2020 when the county lost 804 residents, St. Louis Fed archives show.

Back to top