The 5 Fastest Growing Towns in Northern California Everyone Is Talking About

Written by Chanel Coetzee
Published: September 23, 2023
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The United States is currently experiencing abnormally low growth rates due to fewer immigrants, declining birth rates, and an aging population. However, depending on where you stay, it might seem like more and more people are moving to your town/city each year. You may think the larger cities are experiencing population booms, but this is not true. In fact, cities with over a million residents have experienced a decline in overall population. Below is a list of the 5 fastest growing towns in Northern California everyone is talking about.

1. Dublin

  • Percent Growth: 49.7%
  • Absolute Growth: 21,199
  • Population: 63,856
  • Population in 2010: 42,657

Dublin is an exciting town situated in the heart of Alameda County. This friendly community provides plenty to do and explore. For example, residents enjoy the outdoors at Emerald Glen Park, Shadow Cliffs Regional Recreation Area, Camp Parks Reserve Forces Training Area, and Las Positas Golf Course. Furthermore, there are many popular restaurants to enjoy. Dublin also has thriving businesses, an excellent school system, and multiple recreational options, making it one of the fastest-growing towns in Northern California.

Dublin California

Dublin is an exciting town situated in the heart of Alameda County. This friendly community provides plenty to do and explore.

©Ron Lute / CC BY-NC 2.0 – License

2. Lathrop

  • Percent Growth: 40.0%
  • Absolute Growth: 6,823
  • Population: 23,863
  • Population in 2010: 17,040

Lathrop is an interesting town situated in San Joaquin County. The town has a welcoming community with a family vibe. Lathrop provides residents and visitors with activities like movie theaters, walking trails, parks, and specialty stores. The town is also home to various schools and businesses, which is attracting a younger crowd looking to put down roots. Additionally, it is near Sacramento and Stockton, so residents can take full advantage of both cities without compromising their small-town feel. Two of the main reasons people are relocating to Lathrop are its ideal location, right next to Interstate 5 and the 120 and 205 highways, and its affordable housing.

The Manthey Road Bridge, a 1926 truss bridge with bascule lift span, carries Manthey Road over the San Joaquin River in Lathrop, California. It is also known (ambiguously) as the San Joaquin River Bridge.

Lathrop is an interesting town situated in San Joaquin County. The town has a welcoming community with a family vibe.

©Slamslam102 / CC BY-SA 3.0 – License

3. Rio Vista

  • Percent Growth: 36.8%
  • Absolute Growth: 2,533
  • Population: 9,407
  • Population in 2010: 6,874

Rio Vista is one of Northern California’s fastest-growing cities. that sits along the Sacramento River near San Francisco Bay. It is a special place with a mixture of rural and suburban lifestyles. However, residents have access to modern amenities thanks to the nearby metropolitan regions, Sacramento and San Francisco. In addition, it is only a short drive from Napa Wine Country, Lake Tahoe, and Sierra Ski Resorts. While the town only has 9,407 residents, it is increasing rapidly with residential and commercial growth. In fact, this tiny town is estimated to triple its size in 15 years. One of the main contributors to the growth of Rio Vista is the active senior community.

A view of a bridge crossing the sacramento river at rio vista

Rio Vista is one of Northern California’s fastest-growing cities. that sits along the Sacramento River near San Francisco Bay.

©Steve Culberson / Public Domain – License

4. Brentwood

  • Percent Growth: 36.1%
  • Absolute Growth: 16,730
  • Population: 63,013
  • Population in 2010: 46,283

Brentwood sits in the center of Contra Costa County, California. This town is welcoming and offers residents and visitors the opportunity to explore the great outdoors with places like Brynes Park, Ospero Park, Shadow Lakes Golf Course, and Big Break Regional Shoreline. However, the beautiful scenery is not the only reason people are drawn to this town. It also has a great school system and many thriving businesses. Brentwood is one of the fastest-growing towns in Northern California due to its orchards and farms being replaced by suburban developments, which have been taking place since 1990.

Brentwood Bundy palms

Brentwood sits in the center of Contra Costa County, California. This town is welcoming and offers residents and visitors the opportunity to explore the great outdoors with places like Brynes Park, Ospero Park, Shadow Lakes Golf Course, and Big Break Regional Shoreline.

©Jengod / CC BY-SA 4.0 – License

5. Coalinga

  • Percent Growth: 31.8%
  • Absolute Growth: 4,166
  • Population: 17,252
  • Population in 2010: 13,086

Coalinga is a town in Fresno County, California. While it only has a population of 17,252, this small town has plenty to do, like admiring the breathtaking views at the San Joaquin Valley National Wildlife Refuge or experiencing its trails, perfect for jogging or biking. Furthermore, the town is home to several shopping outlets and eateries, which are very affordable. The main reasons Coalinga is one of Northern California’s fastest-growing cities include:

  • Agriculture
  • Oil
  • Cannabis production
  • Education
  • Incarceration

Coalinga is home to the Guijarral Hills Oil Field, Coalinga Oil Field operated by Chevron and Aera Energy, Next Green Wave, and Ocean Grown Extracts.

Orange grove in Coalinga California

Coalinga is a town in Fresno County, California. While it only has a population of 17,252, this small town has plenty to do, like admiring the breathtaking views at the San Joaquin Valley National Wildlife Refuge or experiencing its trails, perfect for jogging or biking.

©Eric Golub / CC BY 2.0 – License

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Ron Lute / CC BY-NC 2.0 – License / Original


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About the Author

Chanel Coetzee is a writer at A-Z Animals, primarily focusing on big cats, dogs, and travel. Chanel has been writing and researching about animals for over 10 years. She has also worked closely with big cats like lions, cheetahs, leopards, and tigers at a rescue and rehabilitation center in South Africa since 2009. As a resident of Cape Town, South Africa, Chanel enjoys beach walks with her Stafford bull terrier and traveling off the beaten path.

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