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The Top 12 American Boomtowns

By Bloomberg Rankings and Nikhil Hutheesing - 2013-04-24T14:48:01Z

Photograph by Walter Bibikow/Getty Images

Company Symbol % Change
5 of 15

San Antonio, Texas

2007 Population: 1,990,675
2011 Population: 2,194,927
Percent Change: 10.26
GDP Compound Annual Growth: 1.47%

Think of San Antonio, and images of Spanish missions, the River Walk and the Alamo come to mind. Here, as in most of Texas, the key driver of growth is oil and gas drilling, particularly from the Eagle Ford Shale formation. A strong military presence, which includes Randolph Air Force Base, also supports the economy. As of March, about 2.2 million people were living in the area, and unemployment was 6.1 percent. “This is not a little city anymore,” says Steve Murdock, a professor of sociology at Rice University. “San Antonio is the seventh-largest city in the U.S.”