Fastest Growing Cities In Kentucky For 2020

We used data and science to determine the places in Kentucky everyone wants to move to today.

Editor’s Note: Data has been updated for 2020. This is our sixth time ranking the fastest growing cities in Kentucky.

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Is being in an area that's growing quickly a good thing or a bad thing?

Depends on who you ask. Some want bigger, more exciting cities like Louisville and Lexington, while others want peace and quiet like in Hazard and Williamsburg, thank you very much.

But today we're going to put opinions aside and just look at the cold hard facts -- over the past five years, which cities in Kentucky have the grown the fastest.

After getting knee deep in the Census's American Community Survey, we emerged with this set of cities in the Bluegrass State that have people climbing over each other to get in.

These are the 10 fastest growing cities in Kentucky for 2020 according to the most recent census data:

What's the fastest growing city in Kentucky for 2020? Based on the most recent ACS data, Wilmore ranks as the fastest growing city in Kentucky. If you happen to be a resident of Wilmore, you're probably not too surprised to find it on our list.

If you're surprised--and you're wondering why these places are kind of a big deal--keep reading. We'll tell you what makes each of these 10 places in Kentucky are growing like weeds.

And if you already knew these places were happening, check out the best places to live in Kentucky or the Fastest Growing States In America.

For more Kentucky state reading:

The 10 Fastest Growing Cities In Kentucky For 2020

Wilmore, KY

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 6,299
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Population 2010: 3,740
Percent Growth 68.4%
Absolute Growth: 2,559
More on Wilmore: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

Wilmore is a home rule-class city in Jessamine County, Kentucky, United States. The population was 5,920 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Lexington-Fayette Metropolitan Statistical Area. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.6 square miles, all of it land.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 14,433
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Population 2010: 9,049
Percent Growth 59.5%
Absolute Growth: 5,384
More on Mount Washington: Homes For Sale | Data

Mount Washington is a home rule-class city in northeast Bullitt County, Kentucky, in the United States. The population was 9,117 at the 2010 census. The city is one of several surrounding Louisville that have experienced a sharp rise in population in the past three decades, becoming a commuter town.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 5,969
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
Population 2010: 4,310
Percent Growth 38.5%
Absolute Growth: 1,659
More on Vine Grove: Homes For Sale | Data

Campbellsville, KY

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 11,413
Rank Last Year: 4 (No Change)
Population 2010: 9,376
Percent Growth 21.7%
Absolute Growth: 2,037
More on Campbellsville: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

Campbellsville is a home rule-class city in and the county seat of Taylor County, Kentucky, United States. The population within city limits was 10,604 at the 2010 U.S. census. It is the site of Campbellsville University, a private institution. On the border is Green River Lake, established for flood control and now the center of a popular park.

Georgetown, KY

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 32,902
Rank Last Year: 5 (No Change)
Population 2010: 27,268
Percent Growth 20.7%
Absolute Growth: 5,634
More on Georgetown: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

Georgetown is a home rule-class city in Scott County, Kentucky, in the United States. The 2016 population was 33,440 per the United States Census Bureau. It is the 7th-largest city by population in the U.S. state of Kentucky. It is the seat of its county. It was originally called Lebanon when founded by Rev. Elijah Craig and was renamed in 1790 in honor of President George Washington. It is the home of Georgetown College, a private liberal arts college. Georgetown is part of the Lexington-Fayette, KY Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Independence, KY

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 27,183
Rank Last Year: 6 (No Change)
Population 2010: 22,975
Percent Growth 18.3%
Absolute Growth: 4,208
More on Independence: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

Independence is a home rule-class city in Kenton County, Kentucky, in the United States. It is one of its county's two seats of government. Independence is a suburb of Cincinnati, Ohio, and the population was 24,757 at the time of the 2010 U.S. census.

Shelbyville, KY

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 15,660
Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 3)
Population 2010: 13,403
Percent Growth 16.8%
Absolute Growth: 2,257
More on Shelbyville: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

Shelbyville is a home rule-class city in and the county seat of Shelby County, Kentucky, United States. The population was 14,045 at the 2010 census.

Bowling Green, KY

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 65,731
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 3)
Population 2010: 56,407
Percent Growth 16.5%
Absolute Growth: 9,324
More on Bowling Green: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

Bowling Green is a home rule-class city in and the county seat of Warren County, Kentucky, United States. As of 2016, its population of 65,234 made it the third most-populous city in the state after Louisville and Lexington; its metropolitan area had an estimated population of 165,732; and the combined statistical area it shares with Glasgow has an estimated population of 218,870.

Union, KY

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 5,815
Rank Last Year: 8 (Down 1)
Population 2010: 5,018
Percent Growth 15.9%
Absolute Growth: 797
More on Union: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

Union is a home rule-class city in Boone County, Kentucky, United States. The population was 5,379 as of the 2010 United States Census. The area was rural until mass residential growth in the 1990s and 2000s.

Cold Spring, KY

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 6,319
Rank Last Year: 9 (Down 1)
Population 2010: 5,495
Percent Growth 15.0%
Absolute Growth: 824
More on Cold Spring: Homes For Sale | Data | Photos

Cold Spring is a home rule-class city in Campbell County, Kentucky, in the United States. The population was 5,912 at the 2010 census, up from 3,806 at the 2000 census. It is part of the Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky metropolitan area.

How We Measured The Fastest Growing Cities In the Bluegrass State for 2020

To figure out which cities are growing the most, we simply had to look at the growth rates for cities sine the beginning of the decade, according to the American Community Survey put out by the census every year. Specifically:

  • Current Population
  • Population in 2010
  • Growth rate from 2010 to Current (The latest available data which came out in Dec 2018)

We ranked all 78 Kentucky cities with a population over 5,000 people from highest growth rate to lowest.

The city with the highest growth rate during this time was crowned the fastest growing city in the Bluegrass State.

And for those of you who are a little rusty with their statistics, you can calculate the growth rate by the following formula:

[Current Population - Population 2010] / [Population 2010]

Here's a graph of the cities in Kentucky with the largest percent increase in population:
Fastest Growing Cities in Kentucky Graph For 2020

Click to enlarge

These Places Grew Up So Fast In Kentucky, You Know?

So there you have it, the fastest growing cities in Kentucky are led by Wilmore which has been growing at a blistering pace this decade relative to other cities and towns around the state.

It'll be interesting to see if these places can keep growing at the same rate over the next couple of years. We'll be here to let you know!

These places have been growing (or shrinking) the slowest (fastest):

  1. Middlesborough
  2. Ashland
  3. Flatwoods

For more Kentucky reading, check out:

Detailed List Of Fastest Growing Places In Kentucky For 2020

Rank City Growth Population Population 2010
1 Wilmore 68.4% 6,299 3,740
2 Mount Washington 59.5% 14,433 9,049
3 Vine Grove 38.5% 5,969 4,310
4 Campbellsville 21.7% 11,413 9,376
5 Georgetown 20.7% 32,902 27,268
6 Independence 18.3% 27,183 22,975
7 Shelbyville 16.8% 15,660 13,403
8 Bowling Green 16.5% 65,731 56,407
9 Union 15.9% 5,815 5,018
10 Cold Spring 15.0% 6,319 5,495

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About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.