The 7 Fastest Growing Towns in New York Everyone Is Talking About

Overhead view of Madison Street in the Chinatown neighborhood of Manhattan with the downtown skyline buildings of New York City in the background
© Ryan DeBerardinis/

Written by Kyle Glatz

Published: November 11, 2023

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New York is the fourth most populous state in the United States. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, New York State had a population of 20,201,230 in 2020, but the population rapidly decreased between 2020 and 2022. The estimate for 2022 showed that only 19,677,151 people lived in New York, but not all the towns are shrinking. Discover the fastest-growing towns in New York including where they’re located, how many people moved into the areas, and why they moved there.  

The data for this article comes from the city and town population totals and estimates issued by the U.S. Census Bureau.

7. Sleepy Hollow      

sleepy hollow

The village of Sleepy Hollow is along the Hudson River.

©Andrew F. Kazmierski/

Population IncreasePercentage Increase

The first place on the list of the fastest-growing towns in New York is Sleepy Hollow. This village lies along the Hudson River, north of New York City. Sleepy Hollow is famous for being the setting of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” a story about a headless horseman.

In 2020, Sleepy Hollow had a population of 9,976 people. Over the next two years, an additional 1,025 decided to call this place home. The new population estimate in this village is 11,001 people. The population in this area increased by a substantial 10.27%. So, despite its growth amount being somewhat small, this village on the outskirts of New York City is one of the fastest-growing areas in the state.

6. Harrison

Harrison. New York (State). USA.

Harrison saw a recent population increase of 4.1%.


Population IncreasePercentage Increase

Harrison is a large town in Westchester County, New York about two dozen miles north of Manhattan. The town is 17.44 square miles in size, and it is known for being an affluent part of the state. Harrison has several historic places including a battlefield from the Battle of North White Plains during the Revolutionary War.

Harrison was home to 28,212 people in 2020, and the population grew by 1,157 people over two years. The new estimated population in Harrison is 29,369 people. Again, this is not a huge number of people added to the area. However, the influx of new people that moved into this town represents a growth of 4.1%.  

5. Albany

Albany pin map. Close up of Albany map with red pin. Map with red pin point of Albany in USA, New York.

The population in this part of the state grew by 1.6% from 2020-2022.


Population IncreasePercentage Increase

Albany is a city that makes the list of the fastest-growing towns in New York. The city is in upstate New York along the Hudson River. Albany is also the capital city of New York State. This city was settled in 1614, giving the area a rich history for people to explore.

In terms of population, Albany was home to 99,233 people in the city proper in 2020. That number grew by 1,593 people over two years, reaching 100,826 residents in 2022. The population in this part of the state grew by 1.6% during those two years. Given that the city’s population was so large already, the additional 1,593 people was not a significant growth.  

4. Schenectady

Schenectady New York

Schenectady is a small city in Upstate New York on the Erie Canal

©Jacob Boomsma/

Population IncreasePercentage Increase

Schenectady is a city in Schenectady County, New York. The city is along the Mohawk River, and it is only about 10 miles away from downtown Albany. So, this part of the state is undergoing a fair amount of growth.

In 2020, Schenectady had a total of 67,050 people living within its borders. Then, the population grew by 1,759 people through 2021 and 2022. The new estimated population in this region is 68,809. The population grew by a total of 2.62% of people.

3. Oneonta

Oneonta, New York

Oneonta, New York grew its population from 13,081 people in 2020 to 15,518 residents in 2022.


Population IncreasePercentage Increase

Oneonta is another city in upstate New York. This city is in Otsego County, and the southern border of this area is along the Susquehanna River. Oneonta is known for being home to the State University of New York at Oneonta and for the many old buildings in the city. Many of the buildings are included on the National Register of Historic Places, including the local armory and Municipal building.

The city’s population was 13,081 people in 2020, and it rose to 15,518 residents in 2022. A total of 2,437 people moved into the city limits. Oneonta had the largest percentage increase of any of the fastest-growing towns in New York.

2. New Rochelle

The Sun breaks through clouds hitting and illuminating the urban core of New Rochelle New York

New Rochelle is a large city in Westchester County.

©Real Window Creative/

Population IncreasePercentage Increase

New Rochelle is another city in Westchester County. This city is west of Harrison, another place on this list. The city is just a couple of miles away from the Bronx, the closest part of New York City. New Rochelle has many historic regions owing to the city’s very rich, long history. This city also has Iona University and Monroe College.

New Rochelle had a population of 79,734 people in 2020. The population increased by 2,554 people between 2020 and 2022, so 82,288 people now live in the city. That is an increase of 3.2% of the population.

1. Kiryas Joel

Kiryas Joel. New York. USA on a geography map

Kiryas saw a population increase of 18.35% as of 2022.


Population IncreasePercentage Increase

Kiryas Joel is a village in the town of Palm Tree, and it is also within Orange County. The village is known for having the highest percentage of people who have Hungarian ancestry of any town in the entire county. This village also leads the list of the fastest-growing towns in New York.

A total of 6,048 people moved into this part of the state over the last two years, a population increase of 18.35%! In 2020, Kiryas Joel had 32,950 residents. In 2022, the estimated population in this region was 38,998.

So, the fastest-growing towns in New York are a bit of a mixture. Some of them are close to New York City, and that makes sense because of how many people have left that city. Albany’s reason for growing is not so obvious, though. Many factors are driving population changes in New York, but we need the next census to help us understand these changes.  

Summary of the Fastest-Growing Towns in New York  

RankTown or CityPopulation Increase
1.Kiryas Joel6,048
2.New Rochelle2,554
7.Sleepy Hollow1,025

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About the Author

Kyle Glatz is a writer at A-Z-Animals where his primary focus is on geography and mammals. Kyle has been writing for researching and writing about animals and numerous other topics for 10 years, and he holds a Bachelor's Degree in English and Education from Rowan University. A resident of New Jersey, Kyle enjoys reading, writing, and playing video games.

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