At one time, Clark County took in all of Washington state. Today, at 656.6 square miles, the county ranks 35th out of the 39 Washington counties in size.
Despite its relatively small size, Clark County consistently rates high in terms of livability. With more than 40 miles of frontage along the Columbia River, the county offers a mix of urban areas, parks, rural farmlands and forests. Fishing, hunting, swimming, boating, camping and hiking are just a few of the outdoor hobbies residents and visitors enjoy.
Trains, planes and ocean-going commerce
A regional hub for transportation and commerce, Clark County is just across the Columbia River from Portland and the Portland International Airport. Interstate 5 and Interstate 205 provide access to major economic centers in Washington and Oregon, and transcontinental rail links serve the county. The Port of Vancouver offers a deep-draft harbor for ocean-going commerce.
Now the fifth most populous county in the state, Clark County has experienced rapid population growth in the last several decades. The population increased from 192,227 in 1980 to 448,847 in 2014.
These factors have sparked the local economy, which has been steadily growing and diversifying.
Bringing new jobs to this area is one of the main goals of the county's 20-year Comprehensive Growth Management Plan Review, which was adopted in 2007 and will be updated by 2016. While the future looks promising, major challenges include controlling traffic congestion, maintaining air quality, keeping housing affordable, educating the young, caring for the elderly and promoting healthy economic growth.
For more information about Clark County's population and economy see: