Round Rock Becomes a Focal Point of Central Texas Growth
Round Rock started off as a small village, opening its first blacksmith shop in 1848 and the first post office in 1851. The town grew slowly at first, topping out at between 1,000 and 1,400 people between 1900 and 1960. Then, as Austin started to expand, so too did Round Rock, ballooning in size to a population of 11,812 by 1980.
The 1980s saw an influx of tech sector businesses in Round Rock, including PC giant Dell. The once-small village never looked back. Today, with a population of 120,892 and growing, Round Rock tops many national charts and it is now one of the fastest growing communities in the United States. As such, it has become the nexus of growth in Central Texas. Let’s delve deeper into the drivers behind this unprecedented growth.
An Ever-Growing Population
According to U.S. census data, Round Rock’s population grew by 21% between 2010 and 2016. That’s an increase of roughly 20,000 people. The year between 2015 and 2016 alone saw a 4.2% spike in population.
This ranks Round Rock as the 18th fastest growing city nationally. Round Rock has also been ranked as the number one best place to live by U.S. News and World Reports and the number three best place to start a family by LendEDU, among other accolades. With these rankings in mind, it is no small wonder that Round Rock is growing so quickly.
Right now, median listing prices for homes are just over $300,000. That is one key driver for Round Rock’s growth. Homes are affordable for new residents, but with prices rising close to 7% between 2016 and 2017, it is also a lucrative market for housing developers.
Great Jobs Attracting a Diverse Workforce
Another reason why Round Rock is growing rapidly is the availability of a wide range of good jobs. This trend started with Dell back in the 1980s and today, the city features numerous businesses of all sizes and varieties. Pharmaceutical company Insys Therapeutics, for example, already had a large presence in Round Rock and recently announced that they would be investing $24 million in an expansion to one of their facilities — which of course, means more jobs for local residents.
In 2016, UPS expanded into Round Rock by announcing a new distribution facility and in late 2015, it was announced that Airco Mechanical would be brining 400 jobs to the city by relocating and rehabilitating a facility in the area. These, of course, are just a couple of examples of the types of businesses flocking to Round Rock — there are many more businesses that are either expanding or planning to move in.
All of these facts make it easy to see why Round Rock is expanding at such a rapid pace. This expansion is so large that not only is Round Rock listed as one of the fastest growing cities in America, but it has also become the centerpiece of the Central Texas economy.