Our Town: Luana and Postville see population growth between 2010 and 2020 census

Published: Jun. 7, 2022 at 7:18 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - This week, KCRG-TV9 is considering the towns of Luana, Monona, and Postville - ‘Our Town.’

While we often hear small towns are getting smaller, Luana and Postville are growing in population.

RJ Olsen is in his tenth year of teaching 4th grade at Postville Community School. Before he traveled up for the job interview, he didn’t recall ever being northeast of Marshalltown before. He didn’t plan on staying in Postville for very long, but that plan changed.

“Loved it, obviously the soccer opportunity was a great thing too, and there’s been a lot of leadership opportunities,” Olsen said.

He’s one of the 276 people who moved to Postville in between the 2010 and 2020 census count, according to journalism site Iowa Watch.org. That’s a 12-percent jump. The organization’s article also reports Luana saw an 11-percent jump in that time, like the people who moved into brand new housing.

Twenty homes have been built at Countryside Estates in Luana since 2007. The goal is to provide quality housing for people to come and move to the community.

Postville Mayor Dennis Koenig was born and raised in Postville and lived there most of his life besides his time in the Army. He believes the big employers in town have brought people in. “I supposed I’d have to say the biggest one is Agri, is the Jewish owned packing plant,” he said.

“With that it probably brings our diverse population also.” People come from all over the world, from Somalia, Russia, Ukraine, along with people who are Jewish and hispanic. “I don’t believe you’ll ever see a place like ours,” said Mayor Koenig “Just for the fact that the different folks you’re going to encounter.”

Olsen wants people to know the positives about Postville, including its people, who come from a variety of backgrounds and nationalities.

“We’re not really all that different, and in school you see that too,” said Olsen. “At the end of the day, they all just care about their kids.”

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