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Sacramento is the fastest-growing big city in California, topping 500,000 for the first time

Sacramento’s population has topped 500,000 for the first time, and the city grew at the fastest rate among the 10 largest cities in California, according to new data from the state Department of Finance.

The department on Tuesday released a report containing preliminary January 2018 and revised January 2017 population data for California cities, counties and the state.

Sacramento is the sixth-largest city in the state, growing to 501,344 residents, according to the report.

At 1.43 percent, or 7,000 residents, Sacramento had the largest population gain, edging San Diego (1.42 percent, or 20,000 residents) among the state’s biggest cities.

Placer County was among the three fastest-growing counties on a percentage basis, increasing 1.7 percent to 389,532 residents. Merced County was first at 1.8 percent, or 4,900, followed by Placer and San Joaquin counties.

Rocklin was the fourth fastest-growing city with a population over 30,000 in California last year, reaching 66,830 residents. Roseville added 2,563 residents, to 137,213, the most in Placer County.

California added 309,000 residents, growing its population to 39,810,000 residents as of Jan. 1, 2018. Growth was strongest in the more densely populated counties in the Bay Area, Central Valley and Southern California.

The report notes that of the state’s 482 cities, 421 saw population gains, 57 saw reductions and four experienced no change.

Other notable report findings:

Santa Rosa lost 3,081 housing units as a result of the 2017 wildfires. The city’s population did grow 0.2 percent to 178,488 because of an annexation of 2,000 housing units.

Los Angeles, the state’s largest city, grew by almost 33,000 people, putting its population at 4,054,400. San Diego remains California's second-largest city with a population of 1,419,845. San Jose is the third city in the state to have more than a million people, at 1,052,316.

Rounding out the top six are San Francisco (883,963), Fresno (538,330) and Sacramento.

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