STILL GROWING The latest census estimates show Minot's population growing faster than in the past, but the U.S. Census Bureau's July 2013 estimate still puts Minot well short of 50,000 residents. The bureau's estimate for Minot's population in July 2013 is 46,321, still a substantial growth from the last official census estimate of 40,888 in 2010. Some local officials continue to believe that Minot is home to at least 50,000 residents, although the city's count includes temporary residents. Still, it's impressive growth to be sure. The city's growth was pegged at 4 percent from 2010 to 2011, 2 percent from 2011 to 2012 and now at 5.5 percent. Small towns in northwest North Dakota continue to see population increases, as well, fueled most likely by employees who are working in the oil industry. There continues to be debate about the positive and negative effects of northwest North Dakota's sudden population boom, but the growth shows no signs of slowing down.