Hoover’s population approaches 80,000

Published 4:55 pm Thursday, March 5, 2009

The 2010 census could show that Hoover’s hit a population milestone, said Mayor Tony Petelos.

“When the 2010 census is done, we’ll have a very accurate count, and it could be very close to 80,000,” he said.

In 2007, the U.S. Census Bureau estimated Hoover’s population to be 69,872. Hoover city officials believe the city’s population actually exceeds that mark.

“They have their numbers, and we have our numbers. I think we have over 75,000, and I think the 2010 census is going to reflect that,” Petelos said. “If you look at the growth of the city of Hoover from 1967, when it was less than 500 people, to today, I feel that sometime in the near future we’ll hit 80,000.”

Hoover’s booming numbers reflect the area’s family-friendly image, the mayor said.

“This city has always grown. We’ve never had a negative year as far as population. More and more people are building houses here, more and more people are moving here,” he said.

The population increase can be seen most easily in the demand for building permits. In 2006, Hoover issued more than 880 new housing permits. While the building of new houses has slowed with the declining economy, Hoover is still growing, Petelos said.

That growth doesn’t have to stop for a while. With much undeveloped land still within the Hoover city limits, people can continue to build houses or businesses for years.

“We can still continue on this high rate of growth for the next 20 or 30 years easy,” Petelos said. “There are thousands of acres of undeveloped land in the city of Hoover.”

Once that land begins to dwindle, city government has the option of annexing land from just outside city limits.

Petelos said he feels the city has all the resources it needs to handle the growing population — all except a hospital.

“We’re the largest city in Alabama without a hospital. There are 60 cities smaller than Hoover with a hospital (in the state),” he said.

However, the city just added its ninth fire station, as well as more police cars and firefighters. Soon, Hoover officials hope to add more parks and recreational areas, and already have some road projects on the way, Petelos said.