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As with the United States as a whole, the NYC Metro region is growing older and more racially diverse. These shifting population dynamics bring with them cause for caution, a graying region may grow more slowly, and celebration, our region’s diversity has always been one of its greatest strengths.
Data from the 2020 Census has yielded new insights into both phenomena. Our region has experienced a larger decline in young people than the U.S. as a whole, and at the same time has seen its youth population become even more diverse than the nation’s average.
In our August edition of NYC Thinking Regionally, we showed you where the region gained and lost population. In this edition, we take a look at how your village, town, city, or county has changed over the past decade.

You can check out the maps and data yourself using our updated NYC Metro Region Explorer, or join us for this October 18 webinar where our planners will take a deeper dive into the city and region's demographic shifts since 2010.

Data Spotlight:
NYC Metro Region Population Change by Age and Race/Hispanic Origin

An aging population fueled the NYC Metro’s growth, but its population under age 18 declined at a rate faster than the U.S. average.

Pop Change by Under Age 18 vs 18+

Despite a loss in the population under 18 (-165,505), the NYC Metro gained 1,495,029 people 18 and older between 2010 and 2020, driving the region’s overall growth. Long Island experienced the largest net decline of young people, accounting for 37% of the region’s losses, despite housing just 12% of population under age 18. The Lower Hudson Valley was the only area to register a slight increase (+0.3%) in population under age 18 since 2010.

% Pop Change by Under Age 18 vs. 18+

This pattern was generally consistent with national trends reflecting declining births and an aging population. Within the NYC Metro, population shifts over/under age 18 in NYC and Inner NJ were most aligned with the U.S. average, while the rest of the NYC Metro experienced slower rates of growth in the adult population and more significant declines in youth population. Overall, the NYC Metro’s population under 18 declined at a rate 2.2 times faster than the U.S. overall.

Despite select pockets of growth, the most significant declines in population under age 18 occurred in areas farthest from the center of the region.

% Pop Change Under Age 18 by County

Counties furthest from the region’s core in all directions, except Ocean County, NJ, experienced larger relative declines in population under age 18 than NYC and surrounding areas to the west, north, and east of the city. In those non-urban areas, the decline of population under age 18 significantly exceeded the U.S. and NYC Metro averages since 2010.

Pop Change Under Age 18 by Municipality

Despite widespread losses, there were select areas that gained population under age 18. Lakewood Township in Ocean County, NJ experienced the largest increase since 2010 (+25,923), followed by the Town of Ramapo in Rockland County, NY (+13,736) and the Town of Monroe in Orange County, NY (+7,276). In these towns, the increase in population under age 18 exceeded the growth in population 18 and older, and they are each solely responsible for their counties’ growth, offsetting losses elsewhere.

The NYC Metro became more diverse region-wide, with increased shares of Hispanic and Asian populations.

Pop Distribution by Race/Hispanic Origin

Over the last two decades, the NYC Metro’s population has become more diverse, shifting from 57% White non-Hispanic in 2000 to 46% White non-Hispanic in 2020. This shift mirrors the national trend, with the U.S.’s share of White non-Hispanic population decreasing from 69% in 2000 to 58% in 2020 (please refer to the end notes for more about shifts in the White non-Hispanic population).

Pop by Race/Hispanic Origin by Census Tract

82% of NYC Metro municipalities had populations that were 50% or more White non-Hispanic in 2020 as compared to 88% in 2010. Yet, the geography of NYC Metro villages, towns, and cities with diverse populations did not shift dramatically over the decade. Visit Metro Region Explorer to see this and more new content.

Increases in Hispanic, Asian, and multiracial populations drove the NYC Metro’s overall growth, offsetting declines in the population identifying as White non-Hispanic. 

Pop Change by Race/Hispanic Origin

The NYC Metro’s population growth was driven by large gains in Hispanic, Asian non-Hispanic, multiracial non-Hispanic, and other populations. Multiracial non-Hispanic and other non-Hispanic persons combined accounted for the smallest share of the NYC Metro’s total population in 2020 (4%), but collectively increased the fastest since 2010 (+107%). The NYC Metro’s White non-Hispanic population declined in all subregions. NYC was the only area to register a decline in the Black non-Hispanic population (-4.5%), and gains in other subregions nearly offset that loss, with the NYC Metro’s Black non-Hispanic population decreasing by -0.5% overall.

Pop Change by Race/Hispanic Origin by Municipality

The Hispanic population increased in 94% of NYC Metro villages, towns, and cities since 2010. The Asian non-Hispanic population increased in 82% of NYC Metro municipalities, with the highest concentrations of growth in NYC and adjacent areas to the west and east. Declines of White non-Hispanic population were spread throughout the region, with growth limited to a few municipalities.

The NYC Metro’s population gains both under and over age 18 were attributable to the region’s increased diversity.

Pop Change by Age Under/Over 18 and Race/Hispanic Origin

Outside of NYC, the growth in population under age 18 was attributable to gains in the Hispanic, Asian non-Hispanic, multiracial non-Hispanic, and other populations. Those gains, however, were not large enough to offset losses in the White non-Hispanic and Black non-Hispanic populations, resulting in an overall decline in youth population. Though the White non-Hispanic population age 18 and older also declined, the pattern of an aging population was not unique to other groups.

For more information about change by race/Hispanic origin within NYC, please refer to the briefing booklet 2020 Census Results for New York City or visit DCP’s website.

Learn more at our upcoming webinar:
NYC Department of City Planning
October 18, 2021
12:00pm - 1:00pm (virtual)
Register Here

Race and Hispanic origin are asked as two separate questions on the Census form. Data from these questions are used to create mutually exclusive race/Hispanic origin categories. Those who report Hispanic origin are included in the “Hispanic” population, regardless of race reported. (DCP acknowledges that there are other terms (e.g., Latinx) people of Latin American origin or descent use to self-identify. DCP uses “Hispanic” to maintain consistency with data provided and terminology used by the U.S. Census Bureau.) For all non-Hispanic groups, each category includes those who report one race alone, except for “two or more races,” which includes those reporting more than one race. Due to changes in survey question structure from 2010 to 2020, the Census Bureau has cautioned longitudinal comparisons and expects that the declining share of the White non-Hispanic population may be related to adjustments in the survey questions used for self-identification and subsequently how the results were processed (please refer to the Census Bureau’s website for more information).

Have a question or want to get in touch? Email us.

Census Bureau Invites Feedback on Proposed Changes to Forthcoming 2020 Data Products

The Census Bureau has proposed limiting the content and geographic detail of some forthcoming 2020 Census products—a change that could affect the availability of sub-county level data—and has invited public feedback on the proposed changes. DCP has identified several areas of concern, especially where the proposed changes go too far in cutting detail.
The deadline for providing feedback is October 22. You can send your comments directly to the Census Bureau using this email address.

Planning News from the Region

Anita Laremont has been named as Chair of the New York City Planning Commission and Director of the Department of City Planning (DCP) by Mayor Bill de Blasio. Marisa Lago, former Director and Chair, has been nominated by President Biden to be the next Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade.
Just one day after the devasting remains of Hurricane Ida hit NYC and the region, Mayor de Blasio announced the convening of a new Extreme Weather Response Task Force. You can read it’s findings in The New Normal: Combatting Storm-Related Extreme Weather in NYC.
Henri in August and Ida in September dealt significant blows to the NYC Metro region, reminding us all the importance of that most-forgotten of infrastructure: our sewer and storm water systems, especially those in places like NYC, Newark, Camden, and Trenton where all or part of the two are one.
Southampton’s plans to turn its downtown into a mixed-use area similar to Sag Harbor’s have been put on hold after a state judge reversed the town board’s new zoning plans.
A nationwide apartment listing service has projected that the NYC Metro will deliver just under 20,000 completed units this year, second only to the Dallas-Fort Worth metro. Phoenix and Houston rounded out the top four.
The first half of 2021 was a strong one for the NYC Metro Life Sciences sector, especially in New York City where the number of square feet leased was more than four times that leased during the same period in 2019.

What We're Thinking About

The widely reported headline that the percentage of White Americans has drastically declined feels a little misleading if you add in the 31.1 million White Americans who indicated they were also a part of another racial group when they filled out their 2020 Census form say Allison Plyer and Joseph Salvo.
From the 15-minute city, to sustainable energy supplies and rainwater harvesting, to zero carbon housing, neighborhoods around the world are increasingly serving as the most critical testing grounds for a carbon neutral future.
As Oakland, California begins updating its General Plan, a document that will shape the city’s built environment for decades to come, community groups such as the East Oakland Neighborhoods Initiative are doing their best to engage black, indigenous, and people of color individuals in historically working class neighborhoods across the city.
Exurban growth, especially in the South, is being driven by surging housing costs and remote work options. According to United States Postal Service change-of-address data, a large group of exurban counties saw a 37% increase in net migration in 2020.

Upcoming Planning Events from the Region

The Pandemic’s Impact on Planning
Palisades Institute
October 14, 2021
8:30am (virtual)

Demographic Shifts in NYC and the Metro Region:
Insights from the 2020 Census

NYC Dept of City Planning
October 18, 2021
12:00pm (virtual)
Housing Solutions Workshop for Small/Medium Sized Cities
Lincoln Institute of Land Policy
October 25, 2021
6:00pm (virtual)

Have an event you want us to be aware of? Let us know by replying to this email.

Visit NYC Metro Region Explorer!
NYC Metro Region Explorer

NYC Metro Region Explorer has been fully updated with the most recently available data for population, housing, economic, commuting, and other characteristics. Visit the tool to explore trends by municipality, county, and subregion, or download the data to explore on your own. We’d love to hear from you how you’re using it, so feel free to reach out with questions, comments, and ideas.

About Us

The Regional Planning Division was borne out of OneNYC, the Mayor’s long-term plan for the City, which highlighted the need for the city to work with neighbors across borders to promote a sustainable and equitable future for our shared region. You can read more about our team and our work here.

Copyright © 2021 NYC DCP, All rights reserved. 

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NYC DCP | 120 Broadway, 31st Floor
New York, NY 10271

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