by Max Brantley
The highlights, from Metroplan's release:
1. Central Arkansas experiences population growth across the region with Faulkner and Saline Counties leading the region with annual population growth estimates of 2% and 1.9%.
2. The manufacturing industry is guiding the U.S. economy out of the recession due to more expensive international freight transport costs, rising labor costs overseas, and cheaper domestic energy.
3. After a small spike in single-family permits in late 2012, single-family permits have slowed down in the first quarter of 2013. Jacksonville saw the most growth with 55 units in construction at Base Meadows within Little Rock Air Force Base in July 2012. Multi-family construction continued upward through 2012 and early 2013 with the greatest issue of permits in North Little Rock with 488 units.
4. Automation continues to replace human employees. The future of work is depending on “hyper-human” tasks such as emotional skills, intuition, imagination, and development of insights and hypotheses.
In case you wondered: population is up .7 percent in Pulaski 2010-13. But that's better, proportionally, than the .6 percent rise reported for the entire decade 2000-2010.
The city growth leader was Bryant, up 12.4 percent in the three-year span. Conway was up more than 6 percent. Little Rock was up 2 percent.