People moving to Johnson County are likely choosing to live in a rapidly developing town in the Center Grove area.
Past growth in the county has mainly been on the north side of Greenwood, and the Center Grove area. People are still moving to Greenwood at the rate of thousands a year. But, over the last eight years, Bargersville has seen the most growth in the county. Bargersville has grown by more than 29 percent since 2010.
Land annexations in 2010 brought in more than 2,000 new residents. But the population of the town continues to grow without adding new land. Bargersville went to 7,722 last year from 7,453 in 2017, according to recent population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau.
Every other community in the county has grown too, with Greenwood seeing a nearly 15 percent population growth since 2010, and Trafalgar growing by 14 percent.
Bargersville’s growth is beating the rapid growth that’s talked about in cities in Hamilton County, which have traditionally seen some of the state’s greatest growth. Carmel has seen 17.2 percent growth over the last eight years, while Fishers has grown by nearly 20 percent in the same time period.
However, cities and towns west of Indianapolis in Hendricks County are seeing similar or more growth than Bargersville, with Avon growing by more than 32 percent.
All of the numbers are estimates, as the last census was conducted in 2010. The next census is next year when residents can expect to get paperwork in the mail to have their household counted. Respondents will also be able to enter information online to to be counted in the census.
Now school and town officials are grappling with handling the increase of people that have streamed into the town.
A new elementary school, Walnut Grove, is expected to open this fall in Bargersville with an initial enrollment of about 550 students, and the county highway department is working to widen roads and add a turn lane near the new school, which is expected to cost millions.
The town is expected to see even more growth once Interstate 69 is built through the county. The interstate will follow the path of State Road 37 through Johnson County, with interchanges at County Road 144, near Bargersville, Smith Valley Road and County Line Road, in White River Township.
The town is working with the Johnson County Highway Department to identify road projects based on the town’s growth and town officials are studying parks and trails as that growth continues, said Julie Young, director of development for Bargersville.
A large reason why people are moving to Bargersville is because they are looking for homes in the Center Grove school district, but want less traffic congestion than what is in the northern part of the county, and more of a small town feel, said Ron Rose, owner of Indiana Realty Pros.
Bargersville has also seen development in the last few years, with strip malls popping up along State Road 135, which is helping attract people. The town is also a quick jaunt over to Franklin, the county seat, which has been an attraction for people moving to the town, he said.
The town also has a rural, small town feel, which people are leaning towards nowadays, Rose said.
"It is getting out of the rat race a little bit," he said.
While more people are moving in Bargersville, the number of new homes being built is down slightly.
And building permits took a slight dip in the town last year over 2017; 110 building permits were issued last year, with 144 issued in 2017, according to according to data from the Builders Association of Greater Indianapolis.
[sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”At a glance” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]
Here is a look at the population estimates of municipalities in the county:
2018; 2017; 2010 census; percent change from time of census to 2018.
Bargersville: 7,722; 7,453; 4,013; 29.1%
Edinburgh: 4,577; 4,585; 4,480; 2.2 %
Franklin: 25,248; 25,004; 23,712; 6.4%
Greenwood: 58,778; 57,433;51,227;14.7%
New Whiteland: 6,153; 6,082;5,472; 12.2%
Prince’s Lakes: 1,342; 1,346;1,312;2.4%
Trafalgar: 1,285; 1,231;1,101; 14%
Whiteland: 4,418;4,352;4,169; 6%