Calera confirmed as fastest-growing Alabama city

Calera saw explosive growth between 2000-2009, and experienced the fastest growth of any Alabama city during the nine-year period, according to data released by the U.S. Census Bureau.

Calera, which had a population of 3,446 in the 2000 census, experienced a 219 percent growth rate from 2000-2009. As of the 2009 estimate, Calera had grown to 10,984 citizens.

“I can really feel that we are the fastest-growing city in the state,” Calera Mayor Jon Graham said. “A lot of the newer residents are young couples with children, and we want to support them.”

The exponential growth over the past nine years has had positive and negative impacts on the city, Graham said.

“It’s good that we can start to look at some more retail opportunities, like maybe a shopping center,” Graham said. “We would like to expand the area near Publix on Limestone Parkway.”

But with expansion comes a need to beef up the city’s public services, Graham added.

“Our police and fire services are definitely going to have to be enhanced. We are going to have a top-notch police department and fire department,” Graham said. “And as we grow, we are going to have to ask the county to build an intermediate school.

“I anticipate great things for the future,” Graham added. “It’s a great place to live.”

Every city and town in Shelby County saw positive population growth from 2000-2009, as Shelby County expanded from 143,279 to 192,503 during the same time period.

Behind Calera, Pelham saw the fastest growth at 51 percent, Helena saw a 42 percent increase, Montevallo saw a 26 percent increase and Alabaster saw a 25 percent increase.

Columbiana and Westover each saw a 23 percent growth rate, Wilsonville saw a 19 percent increase, Chelsea saw an 18 percent increase, Hoover had a 16 percent increase. Indian Springs saw a 13 percent growth, Harpersville and Wilton each saw 11 percent growth rates and Vincent saw a 5 percent increase.