Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Population Growth Centered in Metro Areas

According to the U.S. census Bureau, Oregon's population grew by 12 percent from 2000 to 2010, adding nearly 410,000 Oregonians to the tally. This growth was unevenly distributed between metro and nonmetro counties. Out of the 12 percentage points of growth, nearly 11 of them came from counties within MSAs, and the remaining 1 percentage point came from nonmetro counties.

Out of the 410,000 Oregonians added over the decade, about 361,000 of them live in metro counties. Washington County (part of the Portland MSA) added the most residents, over 84,000 (19% growth). Deschutes County (the only county in the Bend MSA) grew the fastest (37%). In all, Oregon's metro counties grew by almost 15 percent while nonmetro counties had a growth rate of 6 percent.

Even though Oregon continues to trend toward greater population growth in metropolitan counties, residents are still less concentrated in metropolitan areas compared with the national population. In 2010, 78 percent of Oregonians lived in counties that are included in a metropolitan area, significantly below the national average of 85 percent.

Here is a visual representation of the decennial growth of Oregon counties. The bigger the name, the larger the growth. Counties in red lost population between 2000 and 2010. Read the full article with more tables and maps, written by me.

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