Urban Sprawl, Population Growth Are Chief Concerns for Colorado Voters, Finds New Poll

ARLINGTON, Va., Sept. 7, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — More than three-quarters of Colorado voters believe their state will become a worse place to live if its population continues growing at its current rate, according to an extensive new poll conducted by Rasmussen and commissioned by the NumbersUSA Education & Research Foundation.

“By overwhelming margins, Colorado voters worry that the urban sprawl caused by rapid population growth is despoiling their beloved open spaces and lowering their quality of life,” explained Eric Ruark, director of research at NumbersUSA. “On question after question, they support policies — from restricting new development to scaling back foreign migration — that would curb future growth.”

NumbersUSA commissioned the poll as part of a broader study of sprawl in the Centennial State, which has experienced the 7th-fastest population growth rate in the nation. Colorado has added 2.5 million residents since 1982.

As a direct result of the new development required to accommodate this population surge, the state has lost 1,038 square miles of fields, forests, and other open spaces — an area about three times the size of Denver, Colorado Springs, and Boulder combined. The study includes a county-level analysis of sprawl and population growth, using data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Other key findings from the poll include:

  • 95% of voters feel that preserving Colorado’s remaining open spaces is “very important” or “somewhat important.”
  • 89% think that retaining easy access to natural areas and open spaces is “very important” or “somewhat important.”
  • 81% fear traffic will become much worse if Colorado grows by an additional 1.8 million people by 2050, as currently forecast.
  • 63% support restricting development to “make it more difficult for people to move to Colorado.”
  • 53% favor reducing immigration, which accounts for a quarter of Colorado’s population growth.

“This poll shows that Colorado voters broadly disagree with the ‘growth-at-all-costs’ agenda pushed by political and economic elites in both parties,” said Ruark. “And the divergence could have immense economic, demographic, and political implications for Colorado’s future.”

A link to the polling data can be found here, while the Colorado sprawl study itself is available here. Additional sprawl studies commissioned by NumbersUSA are available at sprawlusa.com.

To request an interview with Eric Ruark, please contact Emeline McClellan at 202-970-9742 or emeline@keybridge.biz.

About NumbersUSA

NumbersUSA Education & Research Foundation educates opinion leaders, policymakers and the public on immigration legislation, policies and their consequences. We favor reductions in immigration numbers toward traditional levels that would allow present and future generations of Americans to enjoy a stabilizing U.S. population and a high degree of individual liberty, mobility, environmental quality, worker fairness and fiscal responsibility.

Media Contact:
Emeline McClellan