76,639 U.S. Census, 2010
80,995 City Limits Sign
83,125 City of Bend estimate.
One of the more argumentative issues among the bubble bloggers was whether Bend would actually lose population in the bust.
I thought it would.
So did it, or didn't it?
Based on what I've seen in my store, I think we not only lost population; but in a de facto way, we lost way more population than even the Census uncovered (4,300 people.)
I've had many regular customers leave town. But even more so, I have a large number of regular customers who haven't officially left town -- often their families are still here, and their residence -- but who are nevertheless working elsewhere.
Back in the 80's we were bleeding residents -- because there were actual jobs elsewhere. I think we've slowed down the bleeding this time because of the lack of jobs elsewhere, as well as the difficulty in selling homes.
And it should be pointed out that if you've had steady, even spectacular growth for decades, that's what you plan for. So even breaking even is probably a set back. Actually declining is probably a double whammy.
To me, that was the whole point in discussing the boom and bust: Planning for it. I think our city officials failed in that; and seem to still be in some denial.
4 days ago