New estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau show modest population growth in Kansas, with the Fort Riley area ranking as the state's fastest-gaining region.
Census data released Thursday projects that Kansas gained about 15,500 residents from July 2011 to July 2012, bringing its population to almost 2.9 million. The projected growth was 0.5 percent.
The Census Bureau also said 40 of the state's 105 counties gained population over the year.
Census estimates said Geary and Riley counties had population growth of more than 3 percent. Both include portions of Fort Riley, where soldiers have been returning from overseas deployments.
Geary County gained 2,600 residents, making its population about 38,000, for 7.4 percent growth.
Riley County gained almost 2,400 residents, for a total population of nearly 76,000 and growth of 3.2 percent.