Housing Complex

Census Porn: D.C. Gets Whiter, Denser

Housing Complex likes data. Today we got some, in the form of a special report from the Census Bureau that compares the 2000 and 2010 censuses. Here are the (few) bits that relate to D.C.

Of all metropolitan areas, the D.C. region had the fifth-largest increase in people "downtown," defined as the area within two miles of city hall. In 2010, 19,502 more people lived within a two-mile radius of the Wilson Building than in 2000. Chicago saw the largest gain in this category (48,000 residents), followed by New York, Philadelphia, Salt Lake City, and D.C.

In particular, D.C. saw a huge influx of non-Hispanic whites into the city, while other parts of the region saw their white populations decline by more than 10 percent as a share of the total population. Take a look:

Click to enlarge!

As you can see, it's the parts of Northwest D.C. situated east of Rock Creek Park that got a whole lot whiter, along with Capitol Hill and, to a lesser extent, parts of Northeast. Most of the areas east of the Anacostia and west of the park saw little demographic change.

  • Daddy Grace Fish Sandwich

    What is non Hispanic whites? Is Senator Marco Rubio considered a white Cuban and William Levy from ABC's Dancing With The Stars? I hate the term non Hispanic whites.

  • Name

    Cool hispanics and blacks are gentrifying the suburbs. That's been the goal for the past 50 years of the Civil Rights movement.

  • TM

    On the same topic, another interesting data point from the ACS numbers is that notwithstanding the reports from last year, DC is still a majority Black city. Since the 2010 numbers came in at 50.2% for the African American population, most people assumed that since the rate was declining so fast that by about halfway through 2011 it almost certainly was below 50%. I'm not sure what the snapshot date of the 2011 ACS is, but it pegs the Black population at 50.1%.

    Of course people were totally ignoring the multi-racial categories when pronouncing the end of Chocolate City. Including multi-racial residents, the Black population is 51.2%. Also people often failed to break out the white Hispanic numbers from the White total, making the non-Hispanic White numbers seem higher. Stripping the Hispanic population out from the white numbers brings the total down to 30%, which is only slightly more than it was in 1970.

    Which is a long long winded way of saying that the demographic story is far less about white influx than it is about black departure. (Which is different than the sociological story. For instance, a white childless couple moving into a house that previously contained a multi generational black family has a much more complicated sociological story, but numbers-wise the larger impact is te departure of the large family, not te arrival of the childless couple).

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  • Weiwen

    Non-Hispanic Whites is the Census term for regular White folks. It's an artifact of how we think of race and how we fill out the forms. James Graham and Mary Cheh would be non-Hispanic Whites on the Census. Rubio would be Hispanic.

    Hispanic is considered to trump race. Most Hispanics put White as their race. Not all of them, of course (e.g. Black Cubans).

  • numbernerd

    @ TM I am pretty sure "non hispanic white" already excludes hispanic whites, so you need not deduct them.

    That said its true that the non black population includes hispanic non whites and multiracials (as well as asians) to its not quite as much a change to "vanilla" as many people think.

  • er

    i believe that i have read that the african american population in DC actually increased from 2010-2012, though not as a percentage.

    is that wrong?

  • http://philmendelson.com/2012/2012/09/25/dcpsexpectations/ @ShawingtonTimes resend (not from my phone)

    More racist #capitalistinfotainmentmedia (porn) articles that help to polarize the city and inflame longstanding divisions. The only relevant numbers that really matter, that focus on what will allow us to move the city forward together, are the numbers of college graduates. And with a ~50%+ failure rate among DC public (charter and DCPS) students, the city is going to be undermined for many years to come by low achievement, unfilled job local opportunities, local resident unemployment, anger, frustration, racism, poverty, and heinous crime among the under class.

    And that's a shame for the Nation's Capital of the United States.

    How many homes are filled by non college graduates Mr Wiener? Looking forward to seeing your *graphic* breakdown of those obscene numbers.

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  • Frank Lee Mahdear

    The 2011 ACS estimates for DC: 49.5% Black or African-American alone, non-Hispanic, 35.2% White alone, non-Hispanic; 9.5% Hispanic (of any race), 3.6% Asian alone, non-Hispanic.

    By that measure, DC is no longer majority black. But of course that 49.5% would exclude bi (or multi-)racial people who identify as black plus black Hispanics. As always, it's more complicated than some people seem to want it to be. Viva la stew.

  • Alison

    One can look at the arbitrary blue lines on a map or compare very recent decades census info and hyperventilate. There is some truth that people live in the DC region not for the gov't flavor each distinct jurisdiction has (DC/MD/VA) but because they live near work, family, or just like X. Likewise, should we compare recent census #s to 1970 or 1930 or 1900? Lest we forget that DC has not been majority black until relatively recently. 1960+ Why do we get bent out of shape when DC gets a little less black and yet not that PG County flipped from white to black in just two decades? PG is now "blacker" than DC. Yet PG is not the black center or soul of the region.
    Things change, people change. Head counts change. They're still all people. Bravo the region is diversifying.

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  • Nick

    Going house hunting tomorrow in several of the green areas. Gentrify DC!

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