PopulationMetro: 709,845
Welcome to the fastest-growing city in the country, where the promise of plentiful jobs comes with the bonus of after-work playtime outdoors.

What’s the fastest-growing city in America? It’s not Seattle, Austin or Dallas. According to Moody’s Analytics, it’s the sub-250,000 city of Boise, Idaho.

You’d never guess that the city everyone is moving to these days is Boise, but excellent access to beautiful landscapes, a strong economy thanks to its booming tech sector, and a lower cost of living than in many other cities similar in size is drawing people in from all over the country. Because it’s attracting so much talent to its many startups and an established Fortune 500 company, the city is growing at an unprecedented rate.

Known as the “Austin of the North,” Boise’s tech scene is becoming well known at a rapid pace. Anchored by the tech giant Micron Technology and blossoming in all sorts of interesting startups, it’s no wonder that Boise does well in our Prosperity category—coming in at No. 5 overall among small U.S. cities.

CITY PERFORMANCE
Place
Place 50
Product
Product 46
Programming
Programming 41
People
People 49
Prosperity
Prosperity 69
Promotion
Promotion 45

Boise is what you may call a natural playground—with mountains, a desert, and a river all within striking distance. Floating the Boise River, hiking around the foothills, or fishing at the Swan Falls Dam all make it possible for Boise to perform so well in our Place category, which ranks outdoor activities and air quality, among other factors.

The only downside to moving to a tech-centered city like Portland or Austin is the unaffordability of housing. Boise has managed to escape this pitfall, remaining a city where you can get decent square footage for your money. In addition to affordable housing, Boise also has bragging rights to the renowned Boise State University—a top-notch job creator and education provider.