Bloomington’s population was 69,291 as of the 2000 census. The 2010 census figures came out in February, and Bloomington is now officially 80,405, an increase of 16 percent.
The news was quite a surprise. The Census Bureau was expecting us to shrink for the first few years of the last decade. As recently as mid-2009, Bloomington’s estimated population was only 71,939 — an increase of less than 4 percent.
So to see that Bloomington is officially the state’s sixth largest city, leaping ahead of Gary (which posted a stunning 22 percent decline to 80,294), it makes me wonder, what was the Census Bureau smoking when they compiled their intra-census estimates?
More importantly, what kind of crack is the Indiana Business Research Center on? The IBRC apparently expects both Bloomington and Monroe County to suddenly start shrinking. Note the 2015 “projection” for Monroe County, even as they expect the state to grow at the same time by another 1-2%.
IU enrollment has increased with every decennial census. (I’ll cite those stats soon.) IU will increase by a couple of thousand students alone in that time…how on God’s green earth do they expect the population of the county to decrease by 10,000 people? Nothing short of a catastrophe would have to occur…and even then, the IBRC number is ridiculous.