Tuscaloosa is growing: 10,000 new residents between 2020, 2022 Census

If you live in or have visited Tuscaloosa recently, the signs of growth are around every corner: roadwork, new businesses and buildings, larger crowds, you name it.

“It certainly has made us all proud here at the city,” said Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox.

The 2022 Census shows a gain of more than 10,000 people for the Druid City since the 2020 Census.

That year, Maddox said Tuscaloosa’s population was skewed amid the COVID- 19 pandemic because thousands of University of Alabama students were living at home instead of in Tuscaloosa.

“With the pandemic, we did not get the benefit of anyone being home,” Maddox said. “Not only did the university close, it literally closed its doors to all activities in March, so you had tens of thousands of people go back home. In our case, 63% of students live out of state, so it’s not like they went home to Birmingham and came back to Tuscaloosa on weekends. They were gone. They were literally gone until about August or September, and by then the Census was already complete.”

Maddox said he’s excited about the latest Census report because it’s a far more accurate representation of Tuscaloosa.

Business owners like Kaitlin Nixon are grateful for the growth.

“As a business owner, this is awesome for me,” Nixon said. “I love meeting all of my new clients constantly. I am a hair stylist, so meeting my college girls, I lose some every four years when they graduate so the constant growth helps me stay in business.”

Nixon is a Tuscaloosa native, and she’s seen the city’s growth spurts over the years.

“Tuscaloosa doesn’t even look the same as it did 10 years ago,” Nixon said. “There are new condos everywhere. Everything is just so nice. It really is awesome again for a small-business owner and businesses locally. I think it helps everybody.”

When it comes to looking to the future, Maddox didn’t mention any unattainable population thresholds. He just wants to keep growing.

“You always want to be plus one over the previous year,” Maddox said. “I think it is beneficial in the fact that you are growing. That means a lot when you are selling your city every day. It reinforces what we are trying to do is make a difference.”

Categories: Local News