Indiana Population Growth Centers Around Indianapolis, Other Cities

May 19, 2016

Credit Nicolas Huk /

Indiana’s largest cities and towns—especially around Indianapolis—continue to see a surge in population. A new study of 2015 census data from the Indiana Business Research Center at the Indiana University Kelley School of Business say Indy-area communities dominate a list of the state’s fastest-growing places.

Matt Kinghorn, demographer at the IBRC, says that’s nothing new.

“So Indianapolis, you know, it makes sense with Indianapolis being far and away the biggest city, Indianapolis also had the biggest numeric gain,” he explains. “It added just under 4,200 residents in 2015, so that’s by far the largest in the state.”

The state’s capitol had the largest total population gain with more than 4000 new people moving there in 2015.

Whitestown in Boone County was the state’s fastest-growing locale for the fifth consecutive year with a growth rate of 14.5 percent in 2015, followed by McCordsville in Hancock County.

Outside Indy, Fort Wayne continued to see stronger-than-normal growth in 2015.  The state’s second-largest city had grown by an average of only 79 residents annually from 2000 to 2012 but has added roughly 1,800 residents annually over the past three years.

Northwestern Indiana continues to hemorrhage residents, with the cities of Hammond and Gary witnessing the largest population declines in the last year, says Klinghorn.

“Both lost more than 800 residents last year, and this has been, again, a kind of continuation of a long period of decline in those communities kind of in the northern Lake County area.”

Other larger Indiana cities with losses last year include Muncie (-196), Anderson (-193), Terre Haute (-147) and Kokomo (-87).