SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — The latest estimate from the state of Washington shows that Spokane County's population has topped 500,000.

The state projects that 507,950 people live in Spokane County, up more than 8,000 from last year.

The population of the city of Spokane is estimated at more than 220,000 people.

The Spokesman-Review reports that more jobs and affordable housing costs are the likely drivers of population growth.

Patrick Jones, executive director of Eastern Washington University's Institute for Public Policy and Economic Analysis, notes that 3,500 new jobs were created in Spokane County last year.

Experts say the national economic recovery also is helping attract new residents to the Spokane area, including retirees.

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Information from: The Spokesman-Review, http://www.spokesman.com