ARC's Population Estimates Show Region's Slow Growth Continues

Contact:  Jim Jaquish
Phone:  (404) 463-3194

Aug 26, 2010

According to the Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC), the Atlanta region saw its second consecutive year of slower-than-normal growth. ARC’s annual population estimates show that the region added 31,500 residents between April 1, 2009, and April 1, 2010.

After averaging more than 77,000 new residents in the first seven years of this decade, the 10-county region* has added only 56,000 in the last two years, marking the region’s slowest growth rate since the 1950s. The smaller population gains in the last two years have brought the annual average for the decade down to 72,000 new residents per year.

“The national recession and its effect on peoples’ ability to move for new jobs or better opportunities really showed up for the first time in last year’s estimates,” said Mike Alexander, chief of ARC’s Research Division. “And since the economy has not shown much recovery, neither has our growth pattern.”

Once again, the City of Atlanta led the region’s growth, adding 7,800 residents last year. That’s fewer than the 10,000 the city averaged earlier in the decade, but still roughly 25 percent of the region’s total growth last year.

Of course, the Atlanta region is not alone. In fact, most major cities are experiencing very slow growth, if any growth at all. The 10-county Atlanta region is now home to 4,155,800 people, which is larger than the population of 24 states.

For more detailed information about ARC’s latest annual population estimates, see the attached Regional Snapshot newsletter, or access the Regional Snapshot at

Population estimates by county and smaller areas will be available at a later date.

*The 10-county region includes: Cherokee, Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Douglas, Fayette, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry and Rockdale counties.

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