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Charlotte area population statistics


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I feel like it's inevitable. These outer lying counties are slowly draining in population, and are usually pretty high in unemployment. We will either see more people commute longer distances to the nearest employment center, or they'll relocate. I also see the same happening with the Rocky Mount-Wilson CSA and the Triangle. 

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2 hours ago, Third Strike said:

I feel like it's inevitable. These outer lying counties are slowly draining in population, and are usually pretty high in unemployment. We will either see more people commute longer distances to the nearest employment center, or they'll relocate. I also see the same happening with the Rocky Mount-Wilson CSA and the Triangle. 

Very much agree with your take on things.  The data just released by the Census Bureau's population estimates program showed that, between 2014 and 2015, the Hickory-Lenoir CSA lost 2,989 residents (Total as of 07/01/2015 was 407,499), and that the Rocky Mount-Wilson-Roanoke Rapids CSA lost 7,748 residents (Total as of 07/01/2015 was 302,665).  Both the Hickory-Lenoir CSA and Rocky Mount-Wilson-Roanoke Rapids CSA are geographically contiguous with the 2 larger CSAs.  So I think you're right, it's only a matter of time before commuting for jobs from the 2 smaller CSAs reaches the 15% threshold required for their inclusion in the 2 larger CSAs (Charlotte and Raleigh) which are job magnets..

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22 hours ago, QCxpat said:

Very much agree with your take on things.  The data just released by the Census Bureau's population estimates program showed that, between 2014 and 2015, the Hickory-Lenoir CSA lost 2,989 residents (Total as of 07/01/2015 was 407,499), and that the Rocky Mount-Wilson-Roanoke Rapids CSA lost 7,748 residents (Total as of 07/01/2015 was 302,665).  Both the Hickory-Lenoir CSA and Rocky Mount-Wilson-Roanoke Rapids CSA are geographically contiguous with the 2 larger CSAs.  So I think you're right, it's only a matter of time before commuting for jobs from the 2 smaller CSAs reaches the 15% threshold required for their inclusion in the 2 larger CSAs (Charlotte and Raleigh) which are job magnets..

It'll also be interesting to see if Charlotte will remain a CSA. I don't know the commuting patterns, but I do know that Stanly and Cleveland Counties are either declining in population, or are stagnant. If more and more people choose to commute to Charlotte, then I could see the two micropolitan areas dissolved. With the Shelby bypass, and improvements to I-85 in Gaston and Cleveland counties, it could happen sooner than later.

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1 hour ago, Third Strike said:

It'll also be interesting to see if Charlotte will remain a CSA. I don't know the commuting patterns, but I do know that Stanly and Cleveland Counties are either declining in population, or are stagnant. If more and more people choose to commute to Charlotte, then I could see the two micropolitan areas dissolved. With the Shelby bypass, and improvements to I-85 in Gaston and Cleveland counties, it could happen sooner than later.

You've made a very astute observation, i.e., the possibility that Charlotte would no longer even be treated as a CSA if the adjacent micropolitan areas (Cleveland, Stanley, Anson) were merged into the Charlotte MSA.  As you know, prominent examples of large cities that are considered MSAs but not CSAs include Phoenix, San Diego, and San Antonio.  Yes, it's possible that Charlotte would no longer be a CSA, but instead a larger MSA alone.  That is a very sharp observation!  

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56 minutes ago, Piedmont767 said:

Sorry to be this person, but can somewhere explain to me, what the difference between CSA and MSA are, and why we might not be a CSA anymore?

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

A combined statistical area (CSA) is composed of adjacent metropolitan (MSA) and micropolitan statistical areas (µSA) in the United States and Puerto Rico that can demonstrate economic or social linkage. The OMB defines a CSA as consisting of various combinations of adjacent metropolitan and micropolitan areas with economic ties measured by commuting patterns. These areas that combine retain their own designations as metropolitan or micropolitan statistical areas within the larger combined statistical area.

The primary distinguishing factor between a CSA and an MSA is that the social and economic ties between the individual MSAs within a CSA are at lower levels than between the counties within an MSA. CSAs represent multiple metropolitan or micropolitan areas that have an employment interchange of 25. CSAs often represent regions with overlapping labor and media markets.  See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Combined_statistical_area

Combined statistical area (CSA) is defined by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget as a geographical area consisting of two or more adjacent Core Based Statistical Areas (CBSA) with employment interchange of at least 15 percent. Combination is automatic if the employment interchange is 25 percent, and determined by local opinion if more than 15 but less than 25 percent.

Combined Statistical Areas (CSAs) consist of two or more adjacent CBSAs that have substantial employment interchange.  The CBSAs that combine to create a CSA retain separate identities within the larger CSA.  Because CSAs represent groupings of metropolitan and/or micropolitan statistical areas, they should not be ranked or compared with individual metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas. From United States Census Bureau definition. See  https://www.census.gov/geo/reference/gtc/gtc_cbsa.html

For Census Bureau statistical purposes, Charlotte might not remain a CSA if the adjacent MSAs (ex. the Unifour) and adjacent micropolitan areas (Shelby and Albemarle) were merged into the Charlotte-Concord CSA.  Then we'd be in the company of large MSAs that are not part of a CSA, such as, Phoenix, San Antonio, and San Diego. See  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Combined_statistical_area  for a complete list of the CSAs.

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56 minutes ago, QCxpat said:

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:

A combined statistical area (CSA) is composed of adjacent metropolitan (MSA) and micropolitan statistical areas (µSA) in the United States and Puerto Rico that can demonstrate economic or social linkage. The OMB defines a CSA as consisting of various combinations of adjacent metropolitan and micropolitan areas with economic ties measured by commuting patterns. These areas that combine retain their own designations as metropolitan or micropolitan statistical areas within the larger combined statistical area.

The primary distinguishing factor between a CSA and an MSA is that the social and economic ties between the individual MSAs within a CSA are at lower levels than between the counties within an MSA. CSAs represent multiple metropolitan or micropolitan areas that have an employment interchange of 25. CSAs often represent regions with overlapping labor and media markets.  See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Combined_statistical_area

Combined statistical area (CSA) is defined by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget as a geographical area consisting of two or more adjacent Core Based Statistical Areas (CBSA) with employment interchange of at least 15 percent. Combination is automatic if the employment interchange is 25 percent, and determined by local opinion if more than 15 but less than 25 percent.

Combined Statistical Areas (CSAs) consist of two or more adjacent CBSAs that have substantial employment interchange.  The CBSAs that combine to create a CSA retain separate identities within the larger CSA.  Because CSAs represent groupings of metropolitan and/or micropolitan statistical areas, they should not be ranked or compared with individual metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas. From United States Census Bureau definition. See  https://www.census.gov/geo/reference/gtc/gtc_cbsa.html

For Census Bureau statistical purposes, Charlotte might not remain a CSA if the adjacent MSAs (ex. the Unifour) and adjacent micropolitan areas (Shelby and Albemarle) were merged into the Charlotte-Concord CSA.  Then we'd be in the company of large MSAs that are not part of a CSA, such as, Phoenix, San Antonio, and San Diego. See  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Combined_statistical_area  for a complete list of the CSAs.

After doing some research, it looks like Albemarle and Shelby will likely remain micropolitan areas for the time being. To qualify as a micropolitan area, the urban cluster the city is part of, has to be less than 50,000, but more than 10,000. The Albemarle urban cluster is at 17k, and the Shelby urban cluster is at 27k. Unless I'm missing something.

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1 hour ago, Third Strike said:

After doing some research, it looks like Albemarle and Shelby will likely remain micropolitan areas for the time being. To qualify as a micropolitan area, the urban cluster the city is part of, has to be less than 50,000, but more than 10,000. The Albemarle urban cluster is at 17k, and the Shelby urban cluster is at 27k. Unless I'm missing something.

Agree with your conclusion. According to recently released data from the Census Bureau regarding its population estimates for Micropolitan Statistical Areas (mSAs), the Albermarle Micro Area had a 07/01/2015 population of 60,714, which reflected a small gain from 2014 of 129 residents; while the Shelby Micro Area had a 07/01/2015 population of 96,879 which reflected a small loss of 1,204 residents from 2014.  You can see population estimates with numerical and percentage changes for all of the mSAs at: http://factfinder.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?src=bkmk.

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While some areas might lose their micropolitan status, I doubt Charlotte would become just an MSA anytime soon. Some micropolitan areas like Albemarle aren't going anywhere and if in the future the unifour counties join, then of course that would mean Charlotte's CSA status doesn't change. 

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I'm flummoxed.  Why is it that each of these southern or border cities is smaller in population than the QC, yet arguably better known?

Figures below are pops. for the city, the MSA, and the CSA.

Charlotte - 2014 city pop. 809,958; 2015 MSA 2,426,363; 2015 CSA 2,583,956. 

Birmingham - 2014 city pop. 212,247; 2015 MSA 1,145,647; 2015 CSA 1,319,238.

Cincinnati - city pop. 298,165; 2015 MSA 2,157,719; 2015 CSA 2,216,735. 

Kansas City - city pop. 470,800; 2015 MSA 2,087,471; 2015 CSA 2,428,362.

Louisville - 2014 city pop. 612,780; 2015 MSA 1,278,413; 2015 CSA 1,504,559.

Memphis - 2014 city pop. 656,861; 2015 MSA 1,344,127; 2015 CSA 1,370,716.

Nashville - 2014 city pop. 644,014; 2015 MSA 1,830,345; 2015 CSA 1,951,644.

New Orleans - 2014 city pop. 384,320; 2015 MSA 1,262,888; 2015 CSA 1,493,205.

Oklahoma City - 2014 city pop. 620,602; 2015 MSA 1,358,452; 2015 CSA 1,430,327.

If you were to randomly ask non-Tar Heels to place the above cities somewhere on a map, my hunch is that the city that would present the most difficulty is the QC.  

Since Charlotte is bigger than any of the other cities in every category (i.e., city pop., MSA pop., and CSA pop.) why is she less well known?

 

.

      

 

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36 minutes ago, Synopsis101 said:

Those are pretty historic cities. We're pretty much a new city.

Bingo!  I think you're right.  The built up central cores of all of the above cities were larger than Charlotte's core going back 50, 75, 100, and even 150+ years ago.  It's remarkable that Charlotte has surpassed them all.  Presently, Charlotte is the country's 17th largest city, 22nd largest MSA, and 21st largest CSA.  The numerous cranes across Charlotte's skyline are a testament to the citiy's astonishing recent development.  Exciting days for the Q.C.

Charlotte actually is a historic city too.  It was incorporated in 1768 and will be 250 years old in 2018.  However, Charlotte remained rather small for much of its history and did not attain regional and national prominence until the late 1980's or early 1990's.  As you say, it's a "new" or adolescent city in that regard.

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1 hour ago, QCxpat said:

I'm flummoxed.  Why is it that each of these southern or border cities is smaller in population than the QC, yet arguably better known?

Figures below are pops. for the city, the MSA, and the CSA.

Charlotte - 2014 city pop. 809,958; 2015 MSA 2,426,363; 2015 CSA 2,583,956. 

Birmingham - 2014 city pop. 212,247; 2015 MSA 1,145,647; 2015 CSA 1,319,238.

Cincinnati - city pop. 298,165; 2015 MSA 2,157,719; 2015 CSA 2,216,735. 

Kansas City - city pop. 470,800; 2015 MSA 2,087,471; 2015 CSA 2,428,362.

Louisville - 2014 city pop. 612,780; 2015 MSA 1,278,413; 2015 CSA 1,504,559.

Memphis - 2014 city pop. 656,861; 2015 MSA 1,344,127; 2015 CSA 1,370,716.

Nashville - 2014 city pop. 644,014; 2015 MSA 1,830,345; 2015 CSA 1,951,644.

New Orleans - 2014 city pop. 384,320; 2015 MSA 1,262,888; 2015 CSA 1,493,205.

Oklahoma City - 2014 city pop. 620,602; 2015 MSA 1,358,452; 2015 CSA 1,430,327.

If you were to randomly ask non-Tar Heels to place the above cities somewhere on a map, my hunch is that the city that would present the most difficulty is the QC.  

Since Charlotte is bigger than any of the other cities in every category (i.e., city pop., MSA pop., and CSA pop.) why is she less well known?

 

.

      

 

I agree with you.

Here are a few reasons why that is so:

1) The dreaded CH factor: Charlotte, Chapel Hill, Charleston SC & WV, Chicago, Charlottesville,VA,  Charlotte County, FL, Chattanooga, TN. Throw in the "Cs": Columbia, Cincinnati, Columbus GA & OH, Cleveland, 

2) The relatively late blooming of North Carolina and even more so, Charlotte. The state was once known in the 19th century as the "Rip Van Winkle State"; the "Vale of Humility Between 2 Mountains of Conceit." North Carolina had no natural harbor so it grew later, really not at all until a generation after the Civil War. North Carolina's population and wealth is in the Piedmont. We behave much like an inland, landlocked state. Those cities/states are always harder to find and remember

3) Our cities were similarly late bloomers. Charlotte did not become the largest city in North Carolina until the 1920 (maybe 1910, I forget which) census. Then the state did everything it could to discourage cities. Look at history, up to and including today.

4) Charlotte had no signature industry until banking took hold about 30-35 years ago. We were a distribution and wholesale center.

5) Indifferent geography. No port, no navigable river, no coastline, not even Atlanta's favorable location for a train to head west.

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12 hours ago, Silicon Dogwoods said:

I agree with you.

Here are a few reasons why that is so:

1) The dreaded CH factor: Charlotte, Chapel Hill, Charleston SC & WV, Chicago, Charlottesville,VA,  Charlotte County, FL, Chattanooga, TN. Throw in the "Cs": Columbia, Cincinnati, Columbus GA & OH, Cleveland, 

2) The relatively late blooming of North Carolina and even more so, Charlotte. The state was once known in the 19th century as the "Rip Van Winkle State"; the "Vale of Humility Between 2 Mountains of Conceit." North Carolina had no natural harbor so it grew later, really not at all until a generation after the Civil War. North Carolina's population and wealth is in the Piedmont. We behave much like an inland, landlocked state. Those cities/states are always harder to find and remember

3) Our cities were similarly late bloomers. Charlotte did not become the largest city in North Carolina until the 1920 (maybe 1910, I forget which) census. Then the state did everything it could to discourage cities. Look at history, up to and including today.

4) Charlotte had no signature industry until banking took hold about 30-35 years ago. We were a distribution and wholesale center.

5) Indifferent geography. No port, no navigable river, no coastline, not even Atlanta's favorable location for a train to head west.

Fortunately, the QC is in the process of creating a splendid, signature skyline, certainly the best between Philadelphia and Atlanta.  Historically, Charlotte passed Wilmington in the 1910 census to become North Carolina's largest city.  However, Charlotte fell back to 2nd place in 1920 when the 2 towns of Winston and Salem were consolidated into one city with a slightly larger population than Charlotte's at that time.  Charlotte re-took the lead as the state's largest city in the 1930 census and has held the #1 spot ever since. 

Currently, Charlotte is a member of a small club of cities (4 beta cities: Jacksonville, Indianapolis, Columbus, and Fort Worth; and 1 alpha city: San Francisco) whose populations are all within roughly 40,000 of each other.  The Census Bureau's 2014 pop. figures for each are, as follows: Jacksonville, 853,382; San Francisco, 852,469; Indianapolis, 848,788; Columbus, 835,957; Fort Worth, 812,238; and Charlotte 809,958.  Note that new Census Bureau estimates for incorporated municipalities will be released this coming May.  The happy news is that demographers working in places as diverse as Wayne State University (Detroit) and at the United Nations anticipate that by 2020, Charlotte will likely have passed every city in this elite pack to become the nation's 12th largest city.  Wow! that's something! 

 

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1 hour ago, QCxpat said:

Fortunately, the QC is in the process of creating a splendid, signature skyline, certainly the best between Philadelphia and Atlanta.  Historically, Charlotte passed Wilmington in the 1910 census to become North Carolina's largest city.  However, Charlotte fell back to 2nd place in 1920 when the 2 towns of Winston and Salem were consolidated into one city with a slightly larger population than Charlotte's at that time.  Charlotte re-took the lead as the state's largest city in the 1930 census and has held the #1 spot ever since. 

Currently, Charlotte is a member of a small club of cities (4 beta cities: Jacksonville, Indianapolis, Columbus, and Fort Worth; and 1 alpha city: San Francisco) whose populations are all within roughly 40,000 of each other.  The Census Bureau's 2014 pop. figures for each are, as follows: Jacksonville, 853,382; San Francisco, 852,469; Indianapolis, 848,788; Columbus, 835,957; Fort Worth, 812,238; and Charlotte 809,958.  Note that new Census Bureau estimates for incorporated municipalities will be released this coming May.  The happy news is that demographers working in places as diverse as Wayne State University (Detroit) and at the United Nations anticipate that by 2020, Charlotte will likely have passed every city in this elite pack to become the nation's 12th largest city.  Wow! that's something! 

 

 

We have a small chance of surpassing Fort Worth in this next census cycle.  We should be right at 830,000, given our recent growth trends and currently only trail Fort Worth by 3000 people.  If both of our growth trends stay relatively linear, we will be within a couple hundred people of each other and about 18,000 behind Columbus, 25,000 behind Indy and about 35,000 behind San Francisco and Jacksonville.  I agree with QCxpat, there is a very real possibility that by 2020, we will be the 12th largest municipality in the country.  If current growth trends remain.  We should be at about 930,000 people at the 2020 census.  Even better, we will have broken the 3100/sq mile density mark.  BONKERS.

 

edit:  sadly, 3100/sq mile isn't really impressive.  That'll put us on par with current day Atlanta, Omaha or Tampa.  Not really known for being urban paradises.  But certainly a move in the right direction.

Edited by ah59396
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59 minutes ago, ah59396 said:

 

We have a small chance of surpassing Fort Worth in this next census cycle.  We should be right at 830,000, given our recent growth trends and currently only trail Fort Worth by 3000 people.  If both of our growth trends stay relatively linear, we will be within a couple hundred people of each other and about 18,000 behind Columbus, 25,000 behind Indy and about 35,000 behind San Francisco and Jacksonville.  I agree with QCxpat, there is a very real possibility that by 2020, we will be the 12th largest municipality in the country.  If current growth trends remain.  We should be at about 930,000 people at the 2020 census.  Even better, we will have broken the 3100/sq mile density mark.  BONKERS.

 

edit:  sadly, 3100/sq mile isn't really impressive.  That'll put us on par with current day Atlanta, Omaha or Tampa.  Not really known for being urban paradises.  But certainly a move in the right direction.

Strongly agree with your analysis that the sweet spot demographically is approx. 4,000/sq. mile.  For example, booming Denver has a pop. density of 4,338/sq. mile.  When we reach the 4,000+ density level, Charlotte will really take off.  Demographers currently project that the QC should reach the historic milestone of 1M sometime between 2023 and 2025.  Amazing!   

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58 minutes ago, QCxpat said:

Strongly agree with your analysis that the sweet spot demographically is approx. 4,000/sq. mile.  For example, booming Denver has a pop. density of 4,338/sq. mile.  When we reach the 4,000+ density level, Charlotte will really take off.  Demographers currently project that the QC should reach the historic milestone of 1M sometime between 2023 and 2025.  Amazing!   

4000 is pretty much my dream for Charlotte.  But we will need about 1.2m people to get there.  So we'd need another 18 years of the same growth (roughly 20k people a year).  2033 can't get here soon enough!

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4 hours ago, QCxpat said:

Currently, Charlotte is a member of a small club of cities (4 beta cities: Jacksonville, Indianapolis, Columbus, and Fort Worth; and 1 alpha city: San Francisco) whose populations are all within roughly 40,000 of each other.  The Census Bureau's 2014 pop. figures for each are, as follows: Jacksonville, 853,382; San Francisco, 852,469; Indianapolis, 848,788; Columbus, 835,957; Fort Worth, 812,238; and Charlotte 809,958.  Note that new Census Bureau estimates for incorporated municipalities will be released this coming May.  The happy news is that demographers working in places as diverse as Wayne State University (Detroit) and at the United Nations anticipate that by 2020, Charlotte will likely have passed every city in this elite pack to become the nation's 12th largest city.  Wow! that's something! 

Are you referencing the World City index? As of the last index in 2012, Charlotte is ranked Gamma+ ahead of Columbus (Gamma-) Indianapolis (High sufficiency) Jacksonville (Sufficiency). I'm having trouble finding FW but it may be wrapped up in Dallas (Beta+)

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46 minutes ago, tozmervo said:

Are you referencing the World City index? As of the last index in 2012, Charlotte is ranked Gamma+ ahead of Columbus (Gamma-) Indianapolis (High sufficiency) Jacksonville (Sufficiency). I'm having trouble finding FW but it may be wrapped up in Dallas (Beta+)

I was wondering that as well.  I would suppose we are maybe in a beta tier, if only discussing US cities though.  Maybe that was the meaning?

 

Although I would probably argue we aren't even in beta for US cities.  We are somewhere in a 3rd - 4th tier of US cities.

Tier 1 - NY, LA, Chicago

Tier 2 - Boston, Seattle, Houston, Dallas, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Washington DC, San Francisco, Miami

Tier 3 - San Diego, Austin, San Antonio, Charlotte, Nashville, Baltimore, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Portland, ect ect.

 

But this is completely subjective, city data type BS.  So who knows.

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8 hours ago, tozmervo said:

Are you referencing the World City index? As of the last index in 2012, Charlotte is ranked Gamma+ ahead of Columbus (Gamma-) Indianapolis (High sufficiency) Jacksonville (Sufficiency). I'm having trouble finding FW but it may be wrapped up in Dallas (Beta+)

Sorry, I was using the terms (alpha, beta, gamma) generically.  I am a lawyer by training, not a professional demographer.  No intention to mislead.  Thanks.

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8 hours ago, tarhoosier said:

In 1927, the year of the great Mississippi flood, New Orleans was the largest and most prosperous city in the south. Think about that for a minute. Things change.

Clearly.  No one is saying this will happen.  Which is why we are prefacing it with "if growth trends remain".  Detroit was the 4th largest city in the US in 1960.  Who knows what will happen.  It's just fun to talk about.

 

edit:. 5th, not 4th.  Baltimore was 6th!!!

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New York City has passed the historic 8.5 M milestone.  See Census Bureau's pop. estimates for NYC's 5 boroughs (counties) below at:

http://factfinder.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?src=bkmk

As of 07/01/2015 the 5 counties comprising NYC estimated pops. were, as follows:  (1) New York County, 1,644,518; (2) Kings (Brooklyn) County, 2,636,735; (3) Queens County, 2,339,150; (4) The Bronx, 1,455,444; and (5) Richmond (Staten Island) County, 474,558, making a grand total of 8,550,405.  

As the Census Bureau's est. pop. for NYC on 07/01/2014 was 8,491,079, NYC's one year growth from 2014 to 2015 was 59,326 residents.

N.B.: The Census Bureau's population estimates program will release the 07/01/2015 estimates for all incorporated cities and towns in May, 2016.

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