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In ranking of America’s top boomtowns, Atlanta strangely fails to crack top 25

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Longmont, Colorado took the cake for No. 1 boomtown, per financial group’s list

A photo of ubiquitous cranes on the Midtown skyline last year.
Do we not have enough cranes around town?
Curbed Atlanta

Despite the seemingly unending explosion of new development around Atlanta, a new ranking of the nation’s top “boomtowns” has deemed the city relatively unimpressive.

Published by financial tech website SmartAsset, the “Top Boomtowns of America” list takes stock of which cities are prospering the most and experiencing the most robust development.

Atlanta clocked in at No. 28, trailing a laundry list of many supposedly booming cities of various sizes, whose names you might have never heard.

Longmont, Colorado, for instance, stole the show, claiming the top spot for its climbing GDP and housing growth rate and its low unemployment rate.

It’s not until No. 4 that a big-name city makes an appearance: Miami was recognized for metrics like population growth—a 9 percent uptick from 2014 through 2018—and a median household income spike of more than 31 percent.

Atlanta, arguably snubbed for a higher spot on the list, witnessed a similar spike in headcount—9.22 percent during the same timeframe—and saw an average annual GDP increase of more than 3 percent, and a nearly 6 percent jump in the number of establishments intown over the past five years.

Additionally, Atlanta experienced an 8.3 percent housing growth rate during that five-year span, put to shame by the likes of much smaller New Braunfels (No. 6) and Frisco, Texas (No. 13), which boasted 42 and 37 percent spikes, respectively.

Then again, as SmartAsset put it, “Colorado, Texas, and South Carolina dominate the top 10,” each flexing low unemployment rates and high housing growth rates.

And places like New Braunfels “experienced population and economic growth at least double the average rates for these metrics in our study,” according to the research.

It’s hard to imagine Atlanta—a boomtown that contains its own boomtowns—being so low on the list, but it’s important to note that SmartAsset researchers were comparing 500 cities of varying sizes.

Additionally, the study indicates boomtowns tend to be good places to take out a mortgage, and Atlanta isn’t exactly known as being an easy place to buy a house.