Opinion: Memories are reminder of current growth

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Last week, I received my copy of the most recent alumni directory for my college alma mater, LSU Shreveport. Not to show my age, but it has now been slightly over 30 years since I graduated from college with my Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration. When I got the chance to start looking through the pages, I spent about three hours in close examination. To say the least, many pleasant memories once again came to life. Furthermore, I began to think about all of the positive progress and change that has occurred in our area over these last 30 years.

Truly, our area has seen tremendous growth and change since 1985. To say the least, growth and progress in Bossier City/Bossier Parish is off of the charts! The population of Bossier City has grown by over 12% since the year 2000 to stand today at over 66,000 residents. The population of Bossier Parish is now reported to be around 104,000. Wow! According to information that I found on the City of Bossier City website while researching some of these statistics (compiled by Clifton Cardin – official Bossier Parish Historian),  the population of Bossier City grew from 775 citizens in 1910, to 3,000 in 1930. In 1940, the population of Bossier City was 5,000.   In 1950, the Bossier City population had grown to 15,260 (with another 10,000 living just outside the city). By 1950, Bossier City attained the designation “The Fastest Growing City in Louisiana.” In 1997, the population of Bossier City was approximately 55,000.

RandySo, in view of the great historical information that I found on the City of Bossier City website, we can obtain an even greater perspective in relation to just how much growth has taken place in Bossier City over the last 80+ years. As mentioned above, Bossier City was designated as the fastest growing city in Louisiana in 1950. And, many of us also remember repeatedly hearing these wonderful words over these last few years: “Bossier City is the fastest growing city in Louisiana north of Interstate 10.”  Over these last few years, big things have happened in Bossier City/Bossier Parish not only in terms of population, but also in terms of business and industry…(and the major companies that have been attracted to our city). Most certainly, more growth is still to come in Bossier City/Bossier Parish and some great things are definitely on the horizon for all of us to experience in the years ahead!

A few days ago, I was given some information by State Representative Mike Johnson showing some recent rankings for Bossier City-Shreveport. Bossier City and Shreveport were listed as the #1 place in America for: Starting a Business and also for Residents Describing Themselves as Christians. Bossier City was also listed as the sole #1 for: The Best Place To Raise a Child and The Best Place to Raise a Family. There were also several other designations whereby Bossier City, Shreveport and the State of Louisiana were listed anywhere from 1st to 3rd in a multitude of categories. What great news! This just goes to show that the area in which we live is one of the best places to live in America. I know that there are always going to be naysayers and those downing or putting a negative slant on what we have going on here. However, there is no doubt, we live in a great place! We are poised for tremendous growth and again, there is much more on our horizon as a metropolitan area. We all have a lot to be excited about!

The August edition of BIZ Magazine (one of our sibling publications) will be a “Progress Edition” chronicling the progress of Bossier City over the last few decades. Surely, there is much to discuss in this regard and this promises to be an awesome “jam-packed” edition! As I said above, there is a great deal of positive growth that has taken place in our area of these last 30 years.

In spending all of my life here, I have many pleasant memories. I have also seen many great things happen here since I graduated from college. As such, I am really anxious and I am also looking forward to seeing all of the future local development that is sure to take place here in the years ahead. I hope that you are as excited and anxious as I am!    

Randy Brown is Publisher of the Bossier Press-Tribune. He can be reached at rbrown@bossierpress.com