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GFDA Releases Report on Economic Impact of

Population Growth in Great Falls Montana

Modest population growth in the Great Falls Montana MSA (Cascade County) created local economic impact of $88.8 million from 2018-2023, supporting 717 jobs in the region, according to a report released today by the Great Falls Development Alliance (GFDA).

The Economic Impact of Population Growth in Great Falls Montana report was commissioned by GFDA from Chmura Economics & Analytics, a leading national labor market and economics firm.

The analysis estimates future economic impact of continued population growth under four different growth rates from 2024 to 2033. Over the ten year period, continued population growth at the same annual rate experienced over the last five years (modest growth averaging 0.66%/year) would generate an additional $241.2 million in local economic impact, supporting 1,256 jobs.

If the Great Falls MSA could increase population growth to the same rate the state of Montana experienced over the past five years (0.92% average annual growth), the local economic impact would increase to $342.1 million and support 1,781 jobs.

The report details the economic impact by local industry sectors. The analysis is limited to the direct economic impact of new household local spending. Even greater economic impact is generated by population growth because it increases the workforce that local businesses need to expand their operations which brings new money into our trade area. New residents also attract family and friends to visit which further boosts our tourism industry and associated retail, recreation, and entertainment businesses.


The study is part of GFDA's strategic planning process. We believe in market-driven economic development. We recently published an updated Housing Market Demand Assessment. In December we released a Veterinary School Feasibility Assessment. We have commissioned a Downtown Great Falls Market Assessment and a Logistics Market Assessment, both of which are underway. We just signed the contract to commission an Energy Market Assessment. In each case, we have chosen firms that are experts in their respective industry fields.

For information about any of these market assessments or other market opportunities in the Great Falls Montana trade area, please contact Jolene Schalper, GFDA Senior Vice President, at or 1-406-750-4481.

Our Mission

Grow diverse economic opportunities that enhance quality of life.

GFDA is a certified Community Development Financial Institution and a 501(c)3 charitable organization. High Plains Financial is a certified Community Development Corporation that offers SBA 504 loans statewide. GFDA and High Plains Financial are Equal Opportunity Employers, Lenders and Providers.

GFDA is proud to host a Montana Small Business Development Center, a Montana APEX Accelerator, and a Montana Food & Ag Development Center. GFDA is a certified Montana MicroBusiness Development Corporation.

GFDA was the first economic development organization in the Rocky Mountain West to earn accreditation from the International Economic Development Council.

For more info, click to our website.

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