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North Dakota population booms, but Grand Forks region lags

While North Dakota’s population booms, much of the state’s northeast continues to lag behind, according to estimates the U.S. Census Bureau released Thursday.

Between April 2010, when the Census count was done, and July 2013, the date of the latest estimate, many counties in the northeast saw growth of less than 2 percent with several seeing their populations shrink.

Only Grand Forks County and Benson County grew more than that at 3.5 and 3.3 percent, respectively.

In neighboring northwest Minnesota, the growth was also tepid with most counties growing less than 2 percent.

North Dakota averaged 7.6 percent growth while Minnesota averaged 2.2 percent growth.

The Grand Forks-East Grand Forks metropolitan statistical area, which includes Grand Forks and Polk counties, grew 2.3 percent, slow compared to other metros in North Dakota. Fargo-Moorhead grew 7 percent, Bismarck-Mandan 7.8 percent and Minot 10 percent.

Here’s how area counties grew (or didn’t grow):

North Dakota

  •  Benson: up 3.3 percent to 6,877.
  •  Cavalier: down 2.4 percent to 3,896.
  •  Grand Forks: up 3.5 percent to 69,179.
  •  Nelson: down 1 percent to 3,095.
  •  Pembina: down 3.1 percent to 7,181.
  •  Ramsey: up 0.9 percent to 11,554.
  •  Steele: down 0.8 percent to 1,960.
  •  Traill: up 1.5 percent to 8,245.
  •  Walsh: down 0.1 percent to 11,104.


  •  Kittson: down 1.1 percent to 4,503.
  •  Marshall: down 0.1 percent to 9,425.
  •  Pennington: up 1.3 percent to 14,118.
  •  Polk: down 0.1 percent to 31,569.
  •  Red Lake: down 0.8 percent to 4,057.
  •  Roseau: down 0.7 percent to 15,520.