Nov 23, 2021 - News
The DMV's shifting demographic centers
Data: U.S. Census Bureau; Map: Jacque Schrag/Axios
Data: U.S. Census Bureau; Map: Jacque Schrag/Axios

D.C. and its suburbs are increasingly the population's center of gravity across the entire region.

  • New 2020 census data shows the mean population center of Virginia rapidly moving north, now just around Louisa and Hanover counties, 90 miles from D.C. In Maryland, the center has moved southwest away from Baltimore.

Why it matters: The drastic shift toward D.C. is an illustration of the national capital region's booming growth — from D.C. proper to Tysons to Bethesda.

  • Northern Virginia grew by about 320,000 people between 2010 and 2020, which is actually 23% less than the decade before, signaling a slowdown.
  • In Maryland, Montgomery, Frederick, and Prince George's counties had a combined population growth of 11.2%, census data shows.
  • D.C's population rebounded this century after decades of decline, from more than 800,000 in 1950 to a low of 572,000 in 2000. Nearly 690,000 people live in the District now.

D.C.'s population center looks to be Truxton Circle in Ward 5. That means half of the city's residents reside north and south of it, and the same for east and west.

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