Clovis has been one of the fastest growing cities in the state in recent years, and its mayor said this week he doesn’t expect that to slow down. Mayor Jose Flores said Clovis is a destination for many people trying to raise families. He also quoted Harry Armstrong, who died in 2018, who spent nearly half a century on the Clovis City Council going back to 1970. “Harry Armstrong, our icon, said we’re a clean, safe city and we still are,” he said Wednesday during a Zoom call. “And because of Clovis Unified School District, we’re a destination. Families want to live here.”
Clovis had 3,093 more residents this year than a year ago, according to numbers released in May from the state Department of Finance. That’s the fifth largest increase in that state when comparing raw numbers. Clovis was the eighth fastest-growing in that state this year when looking at population expansion by percentage, state numbers show, and that’s after at least two other years in the top 10 in California.
The city’s population has more than tripled since 1980 to more than 121,000, according to the latest state numbers. Some residents resent the expansion in a town they once could consider quaint. “We have others that don’t want us to grow anymore, but people want to live here,” Flores said. “That’s economic growth. What they say for business, if you have the rooftops, then businesses can thrive.” Also driving growth in Clovis, Flores said, is the growing medical complex near Temperance Avenue and Highway 168, which is close to Clovis Community Center, California Health Sciences University and other medical services.
Clovis has sometimes been accused of sprawling. The Clovis City Council recently unanimously in April approved an environmental review of plans to potentially push the city’s sphere of influence further north through a study of 1,050 acres. The council members agreed the city needed to look at the area east of Sunnyside and north of Shepherd avenues. The potential change to the sphere of influence includes the roughly 825 acres of new housing the council approved in October.