Suburban townships in southcentral and southeastern Pennsylvania continue to be the bright spots for population growth, while most boroughs and cities in the commonwealth are losing residents.
The latest U.S. Census Bureau estimates have Silver Spring Township in Cumberland County as No. 2 in Pennsylvania among townships for most residents added between the 2010 Census and July 1, 2017, according to analysis by the Pennsylvania State Data Center.
Silver Spring, which has led fast-growing Cumberland County in building permits over the last decade, has seen its population rise by more than 3,800 residents over seven years to 17,469.
Only Upper Macungie Township in Lehigh County grew more than Silver Spring since 2010, with nearly 4,300 new residents. Upper Macungie and Silver Spring also held the top two spots last year.
After Silver Spring, the next three fastest-growing townships in the state were Benner Township in Centre County, part of State College, which added more than 3,100 residents; Upper Providence Township in Montgomery County, up about 2,800 residents; and Cranberry Township in Butler County, which added more than 2,600 residents.
The data center said that 553 of Pennsylvania’s 1,547 townships saw their population grow since 2010.
Meanwhile, more than 75 percent of boroughs lost population. Of the 220 that added residents, the fastest-growing borough was West Chester in Chester County, which grew by more than 1,600 residents.
Mount Joy in Lancaster County was No. 3 for growth with 822 new residents since 2010, according to the data center. Chambersburg in Franklin County was fourth.
Lastly, only 12 of Pennsylvania’s 56 cities saw population growth since 2010. Philadelphia remains the largest-growing city. It added nearly 55,000 residents, pushing the city’s population to nearly 1.6 million people.
Lancaster was fifth among cities, adding nearly 400 residents. Lancaster has nearly 60,000 residents.
Here’s how the five county seats in Central Pennsylvania compared between 2010 and 2017, according to the Census:
- Cumberland County: Carlisle saw its population expand from 18,682 in 2010 to 19,259 in 2017.
- Dauphin County: Harrisburg lost population, going from 49,528 in 2010 to 49,192 in 2017.
- Lancaster County: Lancaster saw its population rise from 59,322 in 2010 to 59,708 in 2017.
- Lebanon County: Lebanon grew slightly from 2010, with the population increasing from 25,477 to 25,770 in 2017.
- York County: York also added new residents, growing from 43,806 in 2010 to 44,132 in 2017.