Access to talent is a top site selection requirement. Communities successful in growing and attracting companies tend to also have strong population growth, which demonstrates the desirability of the location, the presence of jobs, and the availability of housing. High population growth can also raise concerns, with rapid growth driving up housing costs and tightening the competition for jobs.
The population of Longmont grew steadily over the past decade, on par with the State of Colorado and outpacing Boulder County. This indicates that Longmont continues to be a destination for migrants, both residents and businesses. From 2002 to 2012, Longmont’s population grew at an average annual rate of 1.3%, reaching a total population of 88,700 in 2012. This growth rate was just below the Colorado rate of 1.4% but nearly double the Boulder County rate of 0.7% and national rate of 0.9%. Notably, growth was higher in the early 2000s and lowest during the recession. Population growth has steadily picked up since 2009.
Longmont’s economy is intimately connected with the surrounding region. A majority of residents work outside of the city and a majority of jobs are filled by workers who live outside of the city. In total, Longmont is a net exporter of workers, with 19,600 entering each day for work, and 27,700 residents leaving for jobs outside the city. The vast majority of commuting Longmont residents work in Boulder and Denver, while local workers come from all across the Front Range.
Longmont has a higher than average median household income, which has risen significantly more quickly than the national average over the past five years, indicating strong income potential for workers in the city.
Longmont’s median age is 35.2, one of the lowest among benchmarked regions, and the city was the only geography examined that saw the median age decline from 2007 to 2012, showing the city getting younger. Colorado in general is younger than the nation, with a median age of 36.2 compared to 37.4 nationally. The Front Range is younger still, with a median age of 36 in the
Denver MSA and 35.7 in Boulder County, but Longmont has the lowest besides Weld County.
Longmont is better educated than the national average, but less well-educated than Boulder County and the Fort Collins MSA, which are both home to large, public universities. In Longmont, 37% of residents have a bachelor’s degree or higher, compared to 29% nationally, 37% in Colorado, 58% in Boulder County, and 45% in the Fort Collins MSA. As a city without a large university, Longmont is exceptionally well educated, with a particularly share of the population (15%) holding a master’s degree or higher.
Front Range Community College is a tremendous asset in Longmont, contributing to the nearly 6,300 college students in the city and working closely with local businesses and leadership to identify educational needs.
The large Latino community in Longmont presents a significant asset to the city, representing a young, rapidly growing, family-oriented workforce with strong language skills and diverse cultures. However, continued economic and educational disparities threaten to erode the economic stability of the community.