SweetWater 420 Fest took place at Centennial Olympic Park the weekend of April 22, 2016. Photo: Melissa Ruggieri/AJC

Which metro Atlanta counties will see the most population growth?

The metro Atlanta region will add 2.5 million people by 2040, according to projections by the Atlanta Regional Commission, becoming a more diverse place as the 20-county area booms to more than 8 million.

The ARC forecasts that Forsyth County, north of Atlanta, will be the region’s fastest growing, doubling its population to 430,000 by 2040. Gwinnett will become the largest county by overall population, surpassing Fulton County.

The region’s Hispanic population also will surge, the report said, growing by 1 million to 1.75 million, with the bulk of the growth coming in the core five counties of Fulton, Gwinnett, Cobb, DeKalb and Clayton.

Population growth will continue to be spread across the region.

“The Atlanta region will remain a desirable place to live, thanks to our low cost of living and a strong, diversified economy that continues to create jobs,” Mike Alexander, director of ARC’s Center for Livable Communities, said in a news release. “We’ll see growth in existing suburban areas as well as the region’s core, as more people choose to live near jobs or transit.”

Metro Atlanta’s population will also grey as the number of residents over 65 will nearly triple to 1.6 million, the ARC said. Jobs will grow by 1 million, led by education, health care, retail, professional services and scientific jobs, the ARC said.

The population study feeds into the Atlanta Region’s Plan, a road map for infrastructure and other critical investments for the next quarter-century.

Click here to see ARC’s projections for population and jobs growth.

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