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Population

Population

Population

  • The 2010 decennial census recorded 1,759,039 residents in the six-county Central Texas region. Projections for 2020 estimate this number to grow to 2,356,127 (Texas State Data Center, Scenario 2).
  • The final 2010 Census count was about 60,000 over the projected 2010 population (Texas State Data Center, Scenario 2).
  • All Central Texas counties will continue to grow in large numbers, with only Travis County showing a decreasing rate of growth.

Population

Population Growth Rates

  • While the region as a whole tends to double every 20 years, growth rates have historically varied greatly by county.
  • Through 2020, Travis County is expected to slow its growth rate, while more recently urbanized counties (Bastrop and Hays) are expected to show higher rates of growth.

Population Growth Rates

Regional Cycles and Shifts

  • Over the past 40 years the variability in year-to-year regional growth rates has decreased and settled in at an average annualized rate of 3.5% since 1990.
  • Central Texas regional growth rates do not show a strong correlation to national economic contraction cycles (depicted on chart by gray bars). The most recent recession, however, saw the lowest annual growth rate since 1970.

Regional Cycles and Shifts

Components of Change

  • Population growth consists of two basic components: natural increase and migration. Natural increase is a function of births minus deaths (a positive number or rate indicates more births than deaths). Migration is a function of domestic, or internal, migration (people moving within the United States) plus international migration (people crossing an international boundary when moving).
  • Natural increase has accounted for about one third of all regional growth the last several decades.
  • International migration has increased to 15% of all population growth within the region from 2000 to 2010, up from less than 10% in each of the prior two decades. Undocumented immigration is technically a share of international migration, but estimates vary widely on the number of undocumented immigrants in Central Texas. Travis County receives the greatest share of international migration.
  • Domestic migration overall is down in the past decade compared to prior decades, when it topped 60% of our region’s growth.

Components of Change
Components of Change

CONTEXT

Population growth, the raw number of people living in a place, is the fundamental driver behind all of our data trends, from education to traffic to housing. The direction and rate of change in these numbers define our pursuit of sustainability in our region.

The nature of population growth is also critical. Planning for a young workforce population migrating into the region is different than planning for young families settling down in the region.