Population, real estate topics at Bakersfield's State of the City event

Population, real estate topics at Bakersfield's State of the City event

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) — The Greater Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce hosted the State of the City Luncheon at the Marriott Downtown on Tuesday.

The annual event invites hundreds of local businesses and community leaders to celebrate the progress the community has made and examine any challenges ahead.

Mayor Harvey Hall highlighted some of the city's major achievements during his 13-year tenure, mentioning an increase in home prices and a decrease in unemployment.

Hall also cited the 44 percent population growth of the past 13 years as a promising sign of progress.

“More and more people are discovering what Bakersfield has to offer and are finding it a great destination to raise their families," the mayor said.

Attendees also heard from the leaders of public works, parks and recreation and chamber of commerce.

The following are some of the major achievements that were mentioned:

Population increase: Bakersfield is now the ninth largest city (by population) in California, with a population of 354,000

Construction growth: 49 percent uptick in new residential permits, 42 percent growth in new commercial building permits between April 2012 and April 2013

Housing market: 37 percent increase in home prices, 54 percent decrease in the overall number of home foreclosures

Public transit: Bakersfield is the fourth busiest corridor in the nation for Amtrak station ridership, with $15,195,773 in ticket revenue and 507,058 in ridership