Skip to Content
Central Oregon

Bend tops 100,000 residents, U.S. Census Bureau says

Milestone reached in newly released July 1, 2019 population estimates

(Update: Adding video)

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- The city of Bend quietly reached a growth milestone last summer, when its estimated population topped the 100,000 mark, the U.S. Census Bureau reported Thursday.

The Census Bureau just released its July 1, 2019 population estimates, the last ones before this year's once-a-decade physical count.

And it said Bend grew from 97,620 residents in 2018 to 100,421 last year, an increase of more than 2,800 residents, or nearly 3%.

Every other Central Oregon city grew as well: Redmond added about 1,500 residents, to 32,421, Sisters grew by a few dozen, to 2,781 residents and La Pine is nearing the 2,000 mark, with 1,929 residents, the new estimates show.

In Jefferson County, Madras added over 100 residents, to 7,051, Culver added 99 residents, to 1,680, and Metolius grew by 24 people, to 801. In Crook County, Prineville added about 400 residents, to 10,734.

Six cities and towns around the country crossed the 100,000 population mark in 2019, the Census Bureau said. These were Chico, Calif. (103,301); Vacaville, Calif. (100,670); Carmel, Ind. (101,068); Bend, Ore. (100,421); Edinburg, Texas (101,170); and Spokane Valley, Wash., (101,060).

City of Bend officials say crossing the 100,000 mark doesn't bring a bigger share of state or federal funding, nor does it bring big new requirements the city must meet.

And considering the unprecedented impacts of this year's COVID-19 pandemic, there's no telling what will be seen in the April 1 census numbers, much less future years' population estimates.

Also, curiously, the Census Bureau's 2019 estimate for Bend's population is more than 9,000 higher than the 91,385 estimate for the same date as compiled by Portland State University's Population Research Center, which clearly uses different data. The Census Bureau said it tracks births, deaths and migration, while PSU uses other figures, including housing starts.

As seen in past decades, the farther out from the last physical census, the farther the two estimates diverge, as one might expect. But city of Bend Senior Planner Damian Syrnyk said the two numbers weren't as far apart as the 2000s ended.

For comparison, he said:

·       PSU’s estimates show Bend’s population growing by 14,896 people, or 19.4%, between April 1, 2010 and July 1, 2019

·       Census Bureau’s estimates show Bend’s population growing by 23,782 people, or 31%, between April 1, 2010 and July 1, 2019

·       The difference is the Census Bureau showing Bend’s population growing by 8,886 more people during this period, or 9.7%

"That’s a big gap," Syrnyk said. "In 2009, the estimates were closer."

In 2009:

·       PSU’s 7/1/2009 estimate for Bend was 82,280

·       Census Bureau’s 7/1/2009 estimate for Bend was 77,829

·       Difference was 4,451 people or 5.7% 

Bend / Government-politics / News / Top Stories

Barney Lerten

Barney is the digital content director for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Barney here.



      1. It,s people EXACTLY like you .That have destroyed what used to be paradise.You,re just another CITY BOY trying to turn this town into the CITY you came from.

            1. Way too much scenic beauty drawing visitors and too close to major Valley metro for that. Apples and oranges, in a way. You can’t tell folks not to come, without legal fights. Land use laws say you have to plan for growth, 20 years worth. And state law dictates use of room tax dollars for tourism promotion, with a heavy restaurant/hotel lobby that will fight any change.

        1. Nah. I knew Barney when I first moved to Bend. He’s been through it all with the growth. I lived there and worked there when the “Old Mill” was just a mill. Barney is definitely a progressive but he’s always been reporting news in Bend for… Well. Many moons.

            1. “the Blame Society” ?

              In light of this recent Chinese corona virus debacle, you might want to add a chapter or two about the “media’s role in driving political messaging and fear in the modern era of fake news and record levels of media mistrust.

              You are free to approach the topic any way you wish- defend the media at large- or punch em in the gut for tossing their ethics and morals into the krapper as they try to stay afloat in the digital era… but either way- I think less focus on society in general and more inner self contemplation would be more enlightening… for all.

              1. None of what you say has ever shaken my self-confidence. But I have wasted far too much of my time of late trying to have a rational exchange of facts with you. You FAR too enjoy baiting me, as any good troll, and feed off my attention. So I will redouble efforts not to take your “bait.” You may, and no doubt will, spin that as some sort of “victory” by you, or “proof” that you are right, when like most smart folks here, I’ve learned there’s just no talking to you that does a whit of good. So, prattle away, try to do your favorite hobby – push my buttons. I may post a follow-up comment stating the facts to counter your opinions that you claim are “facts,” but they WON’T be directed at you. I have too much worthy news backed up to waste any more of my valuable time on your nonsense. Just having to read it is enough! (At least anonymousktvz writes SHORTER notes, yours are usually quite long.)

                I leave you with this, thought of it yesterday on a walk in the chilly but getting nicer weather, AWAY from the computer: You are shining proof why the words SUPPOSITION and SUPPOSITORY have the same root. Have a great weekend, “Owen.”

        1. You’re off your rocker man. I’m not thrilled to have this influx of city folks, but I accept that not all are bad–just as not all Oregonians are good.

  1. Hey Barney, ever take a look at your competition Central Oregon Daily News? They don’t have comments on their website and it’s a cleaner, more efficient website. That news channel is also better and more professional. Your job is obsolete, does your employer even realize any of this? This KTVZ website is FULL of pop-ups and it’s cluttered with nonsense. Truly embarrassing.

    1. I look at them all the time, as well as their newscasts, of course. As they no doubt keep an eye on us – that’s the way it works! But the numbers don’t lie, on-air or online, and our ‘Leader’ slogan is still valid. They do a nice job, but mine in part is to get the news of note out first, and accurately. Only pop-up I see of late on my computer which is on our site all day with several tabs is the little one at the bottom, easily removable. My job is anything but obsolete – it’s as vital as ever, and many, many folks are kind enough to tell me so.

      1. Yeh Gee- I mean where else can you work where you are always get to call the shots and set the agenda.

        I see here it is 10:28- and the Dashboard “Recent Comments” page has five comments recently posted- all by B. Lerten ! Odd that he would leave that page without updating it so other “guests” might have their recent opinions posted also.

        Just sayin’ !

        1. I was up until 1:30a writing news. So the comments backed up, and I have responded to a few as I clear the backup. I don’t even know where that “recent comments’ dashboard exists. Never seen it. Check the time stamps. It takes a certain amount of sleep to put up with mean, rude people like you. What did I/we ever do to you to make you hang out here 24/7 most days and just beat on us, repeat yourself endlessly, to the convincing of absolutely no one? I worry about you, but also figure it’s a game you enjoy, so … have at it. Guess you hanging here spares others IRL having to listen to this stuff. Most here have the option of ignoring.

          1. “I don’t even know where that “recent comments’ dashboard exists. Never seen it.”

            When we are signed in we have a “wordpress” logo and a dashboard KTVZ mark in the upper left corner of our web page- mouse over the KTVZ will drop a shortcut menu to the dashboard and recent comments page.

            Many of us use this to follow recent discussions.

            1. Thanks for the info. As you can imagine, the staff members who operate this site have a whole different set of menus. I can look at all comments, approved, pending, spam and trash, sort by most recent or oldest, etc.

        2. There are plenty of jobs where someone calls the shots, but I don’t know
          how you think Barney sets the agenda… I send a lot of comments on various
          topics and have only had a few that weren’t posted, but in all honesty I knew
          when I sent them that there was a good chance they crossed the line to some extent.

          -I have to give Barney credit for keeping up on the comments. I have no idea how
          many are submitted daily, but I have a feeling there are a lot. My comments have almost always been posted quickly, sometimes even when I submitted it late at night.
          The times when it took awhile for the comment to show up I figured he was busy doing something else, or possibly even sleeping. Just because I have way to much free time, it doesn’t mean everyone else does. It’s just a comment, it’s not a big crisis…

          -I also give him credit for posting comments that are obviously direct personal attacks or insults against him. I’m sure he gets tired of them and at times probably gets pissed off by them, and rightfully so, yet he still allows the comments.
          Kinda hard to say he has an agenda or isn’t fair…

      2. The Flynn story wasn’t “news of note”? The fact that clapper and rice along with that whole crowd you ran stories on before……suddenly aren’t “news of note” anymore when they get caught red-handed lying to the American public?

    2. I only look at the CODN website occasionally but I do really like their newscasts.
      We watched Z21 news for years, and liked it. I think they had some very good reporters
      in the past, but sadly many are no longer here. This is not meant to be a dig at the current reporters, because I certainly couldn’t do the job, and I’m sure they are probably very nice people, but it seems like they really struggle sometimes. The one exception that really stands out to me though is Rhea Panela. I think she does a great job…

      -I just looked at the CODN website a couple minutes ago, and I saw several ads for
      local businesses. I don’t see those on the Z21 website and I never see any popups…
      I did like the old website format a lot better than the new one though. I never had any complaints about it.

      -How do you figure Barneys job is obsolete ? I think CNN and their endless agenda driven rhetoric is an absolute joke, but from what I understand, Z21 doesn’t have any control
      over that.

  2. I was born and raised in Bend, it was a wonderful place to grow up in the 1960’s and 1970’s with a population of around 10,000. I moved to the east coast a few years ago, but still check online with KTVZ so see what is happening in Central Oregon. I don’t miss the snow or the smoke from the forest fires, but do miss seeing the beautiful Cascades.

    1. Bend was a truly awesome community in the 70’s and earlier, and that is what many of us really miss… If you haven’t been back for several years, things have certainly changed even more since you left.
      I knew that there was a lot of building going on, but last week I spent the night in the hospital and it was a real eye opener. My room was on the fourth floor on the N.W corner,
      and the first time I walked over and looked out the window, I couldn’t believe the amount
      of building that is going on, that I hadn’t seen before, and that was just in the areas
      that I could see well from my room.

  3. If you check the LaPine zip code 97739 you will see LaPine is closer to 10,000 people. The actual city limits of LaPine is a fraction of where the majority of homes are which is along Burgess Rd(not in city limits) and mostly technically unincorporated county. All of those residents utilize the City on a daily basis.

  4. 100,000 people in a town that is more suited for 50,000 or so because of it’s size,
    and some people wonder why the traffic in Bend usually sucks, and it will only get worse.
    Of course there are other cities in Oregon that have the same population, but they are
    geographically larger, and more spread out than Bend.

  5. Barney, you’ve got your own troll. Guess your famous enough to get stalked now LOL. I admit, it’s pretty entertaining to read the comments between you and the one who wishes they could be you.

    1. I am wasting my time answering him, except for the fact that others do read this stuff and once in a while I have to defend me, us and our product from those who can’t stick to the topic and have to get personal.

          1. The trolling has gotten out of hand IMO the last few years. I’m not sure why these folks who are constantly rude or hyper political don’t get banned outright.

Leave a Reply

Skip to content