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Census shows decline in St. Louis, growth in Columbia

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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) – The latest population estimates indicate Columbia has overtaken Independence as Missouri’s fourth-largest city.

Population data released Thursday by the U.S. Census Bureau show Columbia has gained about 10,600 residents between 2010 and 2015, a 9 percent increase that brought the population to roughly 119,000.

Only Kansas City gained more residents over the same period, adding about 15,600 to a population that grew to roughly 475,000.

St. Louis City continues to lose residents. The Census Bureau estimates the city has lost 3,600 people since 2010, putting its population around 316,000.

More Missouri towns have lost residents over the last five years than have gained. Towns that lost residents saw an average decrease of about 30 people, while places that gained experienced an average increase of 300.