Illinois City Hopes Tornado Won’t Hurt Population Growth

December 2, 2014

Leaders in the central Illinois city of Washington say they’re hopeful last year’s tornado won’t affect the area’s previous double-digit growth rate.

The (Peoria) Journal Star reports that Washington’s population jumped 39.6 percent between 2000 and 2010. The population grew from about 10,800 to 15,100 in about 5,870 households.

But then deadly tornadoes struck last November, displacing an estimated 2,600 residents and affecting about 1,100 households. Of those, 600 were destroyed. More than 225 rental units are empty.

But City Administrator Tim Gleason says the tornado hasn’t changed Washington’s status as one of the fastest-growing cities in the Peoria metropolitan area.

After the tornado about 120 students needed to attend school in surrounding towns. Now that number is six.

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