How Raleigh's racial demographics have changed
The Raleigh metro area has grown a staggering 84.6% since the year 2000 — the second-fastest growth of any U.S. metro area with more than one million residents.
What's happening: In addition to the significant economic impact, the growth has made the city much more diverse.
- Raleigh's Hispanic population more than tripled between 2000 and 2022 and its Asian population more than quadrupled, per a new analysis from Axios' Kavya Beheraj and Alex Fitzpatrick.
Why it matters: Such demographic data is a vital snapshot of how Raleigh's racial and ethnic makeup is changing over time, helping to inform policies and programs across the city.
By the numbers: The Raleigh area's Hispanic population grew 258%, to 167,834 during that time.
- The Asian population grew about 375%, to 107,836.
- The American Indian population grew by 266% and Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander population grew by 308%.
- The area's two largest demographic groups, white and Black grew 66% and 92%, respectively.
Driving the news: Demographic trends are driven by a combination of factors, including varied birth, mortality and immigration rates (both internal and external) among different socioeconomic groups.
The big picture: Nationwide, the country's Pacific Islander, Asian and Hispanic populations saw the biggest percentage increases between 2000 and 2022.
- The number of Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islanders grew about 120%, to nearly 879,000, while the Asian population grew about 105%, to 21 million.
- The Hispanic population grew about 80%, to nearly 64 million. The Black population grew 31%, to 45.4 million.
Zoom in: All of Raleigh's demographic groups are growing faster than their national rates, as the city has become a magnet not only for people relocating within the state but nationwide.
- The growth in the area's Asian population, in particular, has been led by an influx of Indian people, according to a study from UNC-Chapel Hill.. That has had a major influence in cities like Cary and Morrisville.
- State Sen. Jay Chaudhuri, a Raleigh Democrat, became the first person of South Asian descent in the N.C. General Assembly in 2016, and the largest Hindu temple in North America was opened in Cary last year.
Of the roughly 1.5 million people in the Raleigh-Cary metro area today:
- 68.3% are white
- 20.7% are Black
- 11.3% are Hispanic or Latino
- 7.3% are Asian
- 2.7% are mixed-race
- 0.8% are American Indian and Alaska Native
- 0.1% are Native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander
Of note: The U.S. is still predominantly white, with growth of 19% between 2000 and 2022, to nearly 252 million.
Meanwhile: The country is also rapidly aging, Axios' Emily Peck recently reported, with the median age reaching a record 38.9 last year.
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