OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – According to the latest annual population by the U.S. Census Bureau, Oklahoma City has entered the top 25 for the nation’s largest cities.
OKC came in at number 25, passing up cities like Louisville, Las Vegas and Portland.
“I think every time we keeping hitting a milestone, the secret gets out a little bit more,” Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt said. “This isn’t the small town you grew up in.”
Oklahoma City’s population is the highest it’s ever been with an estimate of 655,057 people.
“It reflects 25 years of investment in our city,” Mayor Holt said.
In 2010, OKC was ranked as the 31st largest city in the United States.
Since then, OKC’s population has grown by 12 percent.
Holt tells KFOR there are many different factors that helped achieve this milestone, including job creation and MAPS.
Voters approved the MAPS projects, allowing billions of dollars to pour into parks, transit downtown, a new convention center and hotel, and upgrades surrounding the Chesapeake Area, housing one of the city’s main attractions – the Oklahoma City Thunder.
“This is the next built-up spot,” General Manager of Social Capital Restaurant Chris Paluska said.
Social Capital sits just steps from Scissortail Park, which opened less than a year ago.
“The number one compliment we get are people who leave OKC and then come back, is they say this is a different city!” Paluska said.
“Someone is going to look at the top 25 cities in the U.S. and notice us in a way they hadn’t before,” Mayor Holt said.
This ranking is released by a formula created by the U.S. Census Bureau.
However, the official 2020 Census results will rely on the forms residents fill out and send in.
Oklahoma City is only 400 people ahead of 26th-ranked Portland, so Holt encourages everyone to fill out the census forms.