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Flint, Saginaw and Detroit Listed Among the Fastest-Shrinking Cities in America

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Andrea Love, Banana 101.5

It’s no surprise to anyone who’s lived in this area for any decent amount of time, but a new list has Flint, Saginaw and Detroit ranked among the cities with the quickest declining populations.

According to a new list on Yahoo Homes, Flint, Michigan ranks as the 12th fastest shrinking city in America, losing people just slightly quicker than Hammond, Indiana and a tad slower than Manhattan, Kansas. Not that it’s much consolation, but we did fare better than Detroit and Saginaw, who placed 7th and 5th on the list, respectively.

There are numerous familiar reasons for the decline of Flint’s population, most of which are shared by our big sister to the south — Detroit. Obviously, the foundation of our economy began crumbling when the automotive industry left town and we never quite bounced back. The high crime and unemployment rates in the wake of the auto exodus has seen the city consistently named as one of the worst places to live/raise kids/start a business, etc. None of those superlatives really attract new people.

In addition to those old reasons, there are a a handful of new ones that will likely inspire more to leave Flint — something that won’t be reflected in the population for a few years. Any place with consistent budget woes (which are temporarily resolved), major water safety issues and two convicted felons (one of which served time for murder) running for mayor don’t exactly make Flint an easy sell for realtors.

The full list is as follows:

15. Scranton, Pennsylvania — pop. 75,281 (-0.7% last yr.)
14. Gary, Indiana — pop. 77,909 (-0.8% last yr.)
13. Hammond, Indiana — pop. 78,384 (-0.8% last yr.)
12. Flint, Michigan — pop. 99,002 (-0.8% last yr.)
11. Manhattan, Kansas — pop. 56,078 (-0.8% last yr.)
10. Rockford, Illinois — pop. 149,123 (-0.8% last yr.)
9. Charleston, West Virginia — pop. 50,404 (-0.8% last yr.)
8. Erie, Pennsylvania — pop. 99,452 (-0.9% last yr.)
7. Detroit, Michigan — pop. 680,250 (-0.9% last yr.)
6. Jackson, Mississippi — pop. 171,155 (-1% last yr.)
5. Saginaw, Michigan — pop. 49,844 (-1% last yr.)
4. Shreveport, Louisiana — pop. 198,242 (-1% last yr.)
3. Decatur, Illinois — pop. 74,010 (-1.1% last yr.)
2. Provo, Utah — pop. 114,801 (-1.3% last yr.)
1. Columbus, Georgia — pop. 200,887 (-1.5% last yr.)

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