D.C.’s Growth Has Slowed, Leaving Other Boom Cities to Take the Spotlight

Several months ago we reported that D.C.’s population boom is slowing. The city’s been growing for almost a decade, with the biggest population increases happening post-recession, starting in 2009. Growth peaked in 2011 when we added more than 15,000 residents, and it has slowed a bit each year since. In 2014 we added a little under 10,000 residents.

The result is that while D.C.’s growth still outpaces that of the nation and the average large city, it’s no longer one of the fastest growing cities. In 2011 D.C. had the fifth-highest growth among the nation’s fifty largest cities. In 2014 it ranked nineteenth.  As we noted in our previous post, the decline is mostly due to fewer people moving to D.C. from other parts of the country.

As in previous years, the cities with the largest annual growth in 2014 were in the south and west: Austin, Denver, Fort Worth, Seattle, and Miami comprise the top five. Las Vegas, Phoenix, and Kansas City made huge leaps in the rankings between 2011 and 2014. Interestingly, many of the cities that dropped the most in the rankings are those known for their high cost of living, like New York, San Jose, Boston, and, of course, D.C.

dc drops in rank

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