Metro Atlanta’s population to grow to 8 million by 2040, report says

Who knows where Breslanta will be in 25 years – BreslAngeles? Broenix? BresOrleans?

No, probably not BresOrleans.

But if Breslanta is still Breslanta in 2040, hopefully I’ll be able to capitalize on all the new potential readers that will have migrated into the town. According to a new long-range forecast released by the Atlanta Regional Commission, Metro Atlanta will be 8 million residents strong by 2040.

(Photos: New apartment high-rise for Georgia Tech students will leave you speechless)

That’s a lot more people than the 5.5 million or so who currently inhabit our city and all of its surrounding suburbs. Much of that growth is expected to happen in the suburbs we’ve already established, but the report also believes many, many people will move into areas downtown and in the spine between Midtown and Buckhead.

“People are choosing to live near jobs or transit, and walkable communities are rising in popularity,” Jane Hayse, director of the ARC’s Center for Livable Communities, told the Atlanta Business Chronicle. “We see this trend continuing, and even accelerating, over the next 25 years.”

A year ago, the United States Conference of Mayors released projections for cities that could become megacities by 2042. That is, cities that have a population of at least 10 million. The Big Peach is not on that list, but the report said it could be by 2050 if the current pace of growth continues, according to their own math.

Now, you want good news. Here’s the best I can do. In 2011, the ARC released a similar forecast for the city, but at that time, they projected the population of Metro Atlanta to surpass 8.3 million by 2040. So in the last four years, we’ve lost a couple hundred thousand new future residents.

I’m sure our roads will notice the difference.

Photo: flickr/Chip Harlan

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