Growth spurt

San Antonio suburb zooms onto list of America’s biggest boomtowns

San Antonio suburb zooms onto list of America’s biggest boomtowns

new braunfels downtown
New Braunfels is No. 14 among American boomtowns. Photo via

The San Antonio metro area is booming, and a new study from personal finance website SmartAsset ranks New Braunfels as one of the nation’s top 50 boomtowns. 

To come up with its list of boomtowns, SmartAsset evaluated data for 500 of the largest U.S. cities. It looked at growth factors for each city such as five-year population change, average yearly growth in economic output (GDP), five-year change in number of businesses, five-year growth in housing, and August 2021 unemployment rate.

New Braunfels zooms to the top of the list, ranking No. 14 in the U.S. and No. 2 in Texas. The area has seen astounding growth in five years, according to SmartAsset data, with the population skyrocketing 36.03 percent, the housing rate jumping more 54.36 percent, and the town seeing a 26.29 percent change in the number of businesses.

On SmartAsset’s 100-point boomtown scale, New Braunfels earns a score of 89.82, tying with Concord, North Carolina.

Nearby Austin clocks in at No. 17 in the U.S. and No. 3 in Texas. The Capital City saw an 8.03 percent change in population, 16.4 percent change in establishments, and 12.8 percent change in housing growth during the time period studied. Neighboring Round Rock, with a score of 86.97, ties for 25th in the U.S. and takes fourth place in Texas, with an 18.53 percent change in population, 29.9 percent growth in businesses, and 23.15 percent change in housing.

It’s not just Central Texas that is booming by SmartAsset’s measurements. Three other Texas cities broke into the U.S. top 50:

  • Conroe (Houston metro area), No. 3, tied with Meridian, Idaho. Boomtown score: 97.56. Conroe did not appear in SmartAsset’s 2019 boomtown study.
  • Denton (Dallas-Fort Worth metro area), No. 36. Boomtown score: 83.87. Denton appeared at No. 2 in SmartAsset’s 2019 boomtown study.
  • McKinney (Dallas-Fort Worth metro area), No. 39. Boomtown score: 83.59. McKinney appeared at No. 14 in SmartAsset’s 2019 boomtown study.

Four Texas cities dropped out of the boomtown ranking from 2019 to 2021: Frisco, which ranked 13th two years ago; College Station, ranked 16th; Flower Mound, ranked 24th; and Allen, ranked 37th.