South Charlotte

Indian Trail's growth gets CNN's eye

Indian Trail's 2010 census numbers have drawn national attention.

The town's explosive growth - it's population has almost tripled in the past 10 years - caught the eye of CNN producers who are working on a long-term project about the 2010 Census results.

On May 7, a CNN.com team spent the day in Indian Trail interviewing residents and leaders.

The news network's project, which is called "Defining America," is telling the stories behind the 2010 Census, "getting on the ground and seeing what's happening," said Jamie Gumbrecht, a CNN.com producer who visited Indian Trail.

"We looked at the numbers and thought that North Carolina was a great place to go," Gumbrecht said. "One of the biggest stories in North Carolina is growth, and Union County has the greatest growth."

Gumbrecht's team included a videographer, writer, three more producers and a bus driver. They began their day at Indian Trail's Trash and Recycle event, then spread out across the town to interview people.

The team toured the town, visiting neighborhoods and talking with people. Gumbrecht said people were happy to share their stories and direct the team to other residents to interview.

"We met people who had moved (to Indian Trail), and they all had stories about why they came," Gumbrecht said.

The CNN.com team also interviewed several Indian Trail town council members. Councilman Jeff Goodall said he talked with Gumbrecht about why Indian Trail was so attractive to people of all ages. The reasons included the highly rated public schools system, small-town charm and good weather.

"I also spoke of our outstanding diversity and the fact the overwhelming majority of our population has lived here less than 10 years, coming from Long Island, Florida and all across the United States," Goodall said.

Gumbrecht said CNN.com teams also visited Charlotte, Greensboro, Thomasville and Kernersville, and the content from the North Carolina stories should begin to be posted on CNN.com/census this week.

"We are still working on producing all of our North Carolina content," Gumbrecht said. "We came back with so many stories."

Goodall said it could be difficult to find a town that has grown as quickly as Indian Trail, which had about 2,000 people in 1990 and now has more than 33,000.

"I simply believe most people choose their hometowns very carefully and with a lot of research to seek out the best quality of life possible," he said. "These census numbers speak for themselves per the outstanding quality of live that is offered in Indian Trail."

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