Harnett County experienced the sixth largest increase in population of any micropolitan area in the United States from 2016 to 2017 and is now the 10th most populous micropolitan area in the nation.
These statistics are according to the U.S. Census Bureau, which released its 2017 population estimates for counties and Metropolitan/Micropolitan Statistical Areas on March 22, 2018.
The Census Bureau estimated Harnett County’s 2017 population at 132,754. Harnett was the eighth fastest growing county in North Carolina from 2010 to 2017, with its population increasing by 15.8 percent (18,076 residents) during that time. Harnett County’s population has grown by 45.9 percent since 2000, growing by 41,776 residents.
“These figures from the U.S. Census Bureau confirm what we have been seeing over the past year and really for the last several decades. Harnett County is a rapidly growing county in a rapidly growing region,” said Interim Assistant County Manager Brian Haney. “Harnett County is a very attractive location in terms of its proximity to some of our state’s largest cities along with a pristine natural landscape that includes the Cape Fear River and numerous opportunities for outdoor recreation.”
Haney said Harnett County continues to experience significant growth in the northern and southwestern parts of the county coming down from Wake County and the Triangle, and up from Fort Bragg.
“This growth presents a great deal of opportunities, as well as challenges in terms of the increased demand for County services,” said Haney. “The Harnett County Board of Commissioners and staff have taken and continue to take a proactive approach to meeting these opportunities and challenges head-on by planning to provide increased services and amenities for our current and future residents in as fiscally responsible a manner as possible.”
Micropolitan Statistical Areas (MiSAs) are organized around central towns of 10,000 but less than 50,000 in population. Harnett County is considered the Dunn Micropolitan Statistical Area.