St. George, the county seat of Washington County, is the largest of all the towns founded during the LDS Church’s Cotton Mission of 1861. Located in the southwest section of Utah at an elevation of 2,880 feet above sea level, St. George has an average annual temperature of 59.9° F with summer temperatures well into the 100s and the average maximum winter temperature around 55° F. The average annual rainfall is 8.30 inches, and the normal growing season is 196 days. All these factors made the area a suitable location for the early settlement.
Earlier Native American inhabitants of the St. George area included the Virgin River Anasazi, who left evidence of their presence in the rock art and archaeological sites that remain. The first recorded Euro-Americans to visit the area were the Dominguez-Escalante Party in 1776; they were followed by fur trappers, including Jedediah Smith, and still later by government survey parties.
US Today News – Mar. 22, 2018
ST. GEORGE, Utah — St. George is the fastest-growing metropolitan area in the U.S., according to new estimates from the Census Bureau.
There were an estimated 165,662 people in 2017 in the designated metro area, which includes most of Washington County in southwestern Utah, up 4% from 2016, according to estimates released Thursday.
The news may not surprise area residents used to coping with the constant road construction; looking up at new homes, new stores and other construction projects; and watching as housing developments expand away from the city centers and into the surrounding desert.
Fueled by growth
It’s no secret around town that St. George is one of the fastest-growing areas of the country, but the numbers once again bore that out and is a large part of why housing has shot up in the area.
A 2019 report from the U.S. Census Bureau showed St. George as the third fastest-growing metro area in the nation with a 3.5 percent increase after adding about 6,000 new residents last year for an estimated 2018 population of 171,700.
With all of these people moving to the area, it makes sense that residential life would expand at a similar rate. Home prices are still rising in St. George, and industry experts say they have expectations for home values to continue to increase and for home building to continue into 2021