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RISMEDIA, Jan. 10, 2008-Gadberry Group announced its list of last year’s seven most notable areas in the U.S. – Gadberry Group’s 7 from 2007.

Gadberry Group’s 7 from 2007 include:

Frisco, TX (Dallas suburb)
Brighton, CO (Denver suburb)
Goodyear, AZ (Phoenix suburb)
Plainfield, IL (Chicago suburb)
North Port, FL (Sarasota suburb)
Lawrenceville, GA (Atlanta suburb)
Wentzville, MO (St. Louis suburb)

“Some of the areas on the list are known for their dramatic, hockey-stick growth, but there were definitely a couple of surprises that emerged during our statistical evaluation,” said Gadberry Group principal, Larry Martin. Headquartered in Little Rock, AR, Gadberry Group provides location intelligence services and data for the world’s top retail brands.

According to Martin, most researchers agree that Census data has been the standard for understanding the distribution and demographic makeup of the U.S. population. “But Census data is almost eight years old, so recent growth in rapidly changing markets can’t be captured using only traditional Census data estimates and projections,” he added.

The firm employed a statistical ranking system in their evaluation of the 17,000 Census Places, using current demographic consumer data and a proprietary household geo-demographic technology. The selection criteria and statistical methodology accounted for high-change household and population change variables such as percent change, absolute change and the presence of emerging Census blocks (blocks with less than 10 households in Census 2000 and more than 100 households in 2007). Other variables, such as ethnic composition and household income change were considered in the ranking system.

“Our analysis revealed that Frisco’s population growth was the most significant among all Census Places in the nation,” said Martin. “In fact, Collin County and the entire North Dallas Corridor saw dramatic growth in 2007.”

By the Numbers – 7 from 2007

Frisco, Texas – “More and more people are calling Frisco home than ever before and they’re attracted to our community for a variety of reasons,” said Frisco Mayor Mike Simpson. “Our location is ideal, since the Dallas North Tollway extends through our community, north to south. We have low taxes, a low crime rate and top-notch schools. Our infrastructure is solid, providing excellent roads, water and sewer services, not to mention numerous new city facilities.”

Since Census 2000, Frisco’s population grew 156% and there were 17 emerging blocks. Gadberry ethnic data revealed that Asian households in Frisco increased from 248 in 2000 to 1,695 in 2007 (583%). Indian households made up 31% of all Asian households and Chinese households represented 27%. Hispanic households increased from 911 in 2000 to 2,611 in 2007 (187%).

Brighton, Colorado – “For fast-growing cities like Brighton, Census-based data has been inaccurate and doesn’t take into account what’s actually happening in our market,” said Susan Stanton, Brighton Economic Development Corp. president and CEO. “The Gadberry Group’s data is the most accurate representation of our population and validates what we’ve been experiencing since the Denver International Airport entered the global transportation stage. Companies like Staples and Toshiba have seen the obvious strategic advantages of being in Brighton.”

Brighton grew from 9,755 households in 2000 to 21,608 in 2007 (122%) with the household growth from 2006 to 2007 at 13%. Brighton had 28 emerging blocks last year, the largest number in Gadberry’s 7 from 2007 list. Japanese households in Brighton make up 43% of all Asian households. Since Census 2000, the average household income grew from $55,989 to $65,759, with the highest number of households in the $80,000 to $89,999 range.

Goodyear, Arizona – Household growth in Goodyear increased from 7,459 in 2000 to 19,804 households in 2007 (166%). Goodyear had 21 emerging blocks, second only to Brighton among Gadberry’s notable Places from 2007. Goodyear’s Hispanic households increased from 828 in 2000 to 3,053 in 2007 (269%). According to Gadberry data, 43% of all Hispanic households in Goodyear are bilingual, speaking primarily Spanish but understanding English, and 40% are assimilated, or English speaking only. Together with neighboring Avondale, the combined Goodyear/Avondale area grew from 18,519 in 2000 to 42,926 in 2007 (122%).

“Fast growing communities like ours need accurate, up-to-date population numbers,” said Harry Paxton, City of Goodyear Economic Development director. “This data provides a very detailed 21st century household demographic profile showing who the customers are in a market area. Quality data like this can help us market to corporate America why Goodyear is an excellent location choice in the Greater Phoenix area.”

Plainfield, Illinois – The number of Village of Plainfield households grew from 6,903 in 2000 to 13,849 households in 2007 (101%). Plainfield’s growth continues unabated as evidenced by a 17.5% growth from 2006 to 2007 from 11,782 households to 13,849, which represents 29.8% of total growth since 2000. There were 16 emerging blocks last year in Plainfield.

“Over the past five years the Village has experienced tremendous commercial development including a Barnes & Noble, Target, Super Wal-Mart, Kohl’s and a Meijers. In 2007 the Village approved the first life style center which will contain approximately 600,000 square feet and will contain Von Maur Department store as one of the major anchors,” said Michael Garrigan, Village of Plainfield planner.

North Port, Florida – North Port grew from 8,948 households in 2000 to 19,554 households in 2007 (119%) and had seven emerging blocks since the last Census. The number of Hispanic households increased the most – from 219 to 1,169 (434%) from 2000 to 2007. Puerto Rican households were predominant among Hispanic households. Gadberry’s ethnic data indicates that 57% of Hispanic households are assimilated with 43% bilingual, speaking Spanish primarily but understanding English.

According to City Manager Steven Crowell, North Port has taken steps to accommodate its growing population. The city has built several parks, repaved more than 100 miles of neighborhood streets and is in the midst of widening several major roadways.

“North Port encompasses a 103 square-mile area and is currently about 20% built out, so we have great opportunities for even more growth,” said Crowell. “A great example of this is West Villages, a planned commercial and 15,000-home residential development that is already under construction. Last year we had retailers such as Home Depot and Wal-Mart locate here. Lowe’s Home Improvement is about to begin construction. Meanwhile, we’ve added several new shopping centers featuring smaller businesses, such as locally owned restaurants, ice cream parlors and furniture stores.”

Lawrenceville, Georgia – “As most demographic researchers know, the southeast portion of the United States has experienced significant growth,” said Martin. “An Atlanta suburb, Lawrenceville is a great example of that phenomenon.”

Lawrenceville grew from 27,107 households in 2000 to 43,013 households in 2007 (59%) and had nine emerging blocks. Together with nearby Dacula, the combined Places of Lawrenceville and Dacula area grew from 30,618 in 2000 to 50,637 in 2007 (65%).

Wentzville, Missouri – Household growth in Wentzville grew from 3,966 in 2000 to 9,574 households in 2007 (141%) and had four emerging blocks. Gadberry data indicates that Wentzville continues to grow and added almost 1,500 households to its base of 8,080 in 2006 (an estimated18.5% year over year growth). The combined Wentzville/O’Fallon area grew from 29,806 in 2000 to 48,237 in 2007 (62%).

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