If you were to select a random person in Europe, there’s a 75% chance that person lives in an urban area rather than a rural one.
In the coming decades, this region’s urban population figure is expected to rise even higher, from 75% to 84% by 2050.
Based on projected average annual population growth rates between 2020-2025, Visual Capitalist's Iman Ghosh details below which are the fastest growing cities in Europe?
Russia’s well-known for its expansive landmass, but the country is more than its vast terrain. In fact, Russia contains six of the top 20 fastest growing cities in Europe.
Interestingly, Balashikha—the fastest growing European city—is located just 25km (15 mi) outside Moscow. Rapid expansion at the peripheries of capital cities like this are typically attributed to a phenomenon called urban sprawl.
Although Balashikha is projected to experience the fastest annual rate of growth (2.01%) in the region over the next few years, when pitted against others on the global stage, it only ranks in 768th place.
Europe vs. Global
It’s important to note that Europe’s urban growth rates are relatively slow compared to many other parts of the world, such as Asia and Africa.
From 2020-2025, the world’s fastest growing city, Gwagwalada, Nigeria, is expected to grow more than 3x faster than Europe’s fastest growing city, Balashikha.