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Wednesday, July 7, 2004


Bellevue feels growing pains

City population jumps 13 percent since 2000 Census

Express Staff Writer

Bellevue is booming, according to the population increases recorded by the U.S. Census Bureau.

The Census Bureau recently released population changes for Idaho cities. Overall the cities in Blaine County experienced an increase in growth, but none more dramatic than Bellevue.

The growth is evident as "the general level of activity is up and up," Mayor John Barton said in response to the population increase.

The numbers released from the Census Bureau confirm that Bellevue leads the charge in county population growth with a 5.43 percent increase from mid-2002 to mid-2003. The increase represents 109 new Bellevue residents. The city’s total population recorded in mid-2003 was 2115 residents. There were 2006 residents in mid-2002.

The mayor suggested the population numbers are likely even higher since the data was collected almost a year ago.

The numbers are significant when compared with growth around the county and the state. The Census Bureau reported that Hailey’s population increased by 3.14 percent, Ketchum by .77 percent and Carey by .57 percent. Sun Valley recorded no change.

Bellevue’s growth is an important indicator of the shift in the valley’s growth.

The city’s population has increased 13 percent since the 2000 census and a 66 percent since the 1990 census.

The significant trend in Bellevue’s growth has wide implications for the city.

According to Barton the increase in growth places the greatest pressure on the water supply, treatment of wastewater, street maintenance and law enforcement.

"We will have to look hard at water and sewer and how to pay for it," Bellevue Councilwomen Vivian Ivie said.

The growth in Bellevue and Blaine County mirrors growth around the state. The bureau calculated a 1.73 percent increase in Idaho’s state population.


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