740,000 or 840,000? DC's Varying Ten-Year Population Projections

  • March 9th 2020

by Nena Perry-Brown

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As evidence mounts of slowing population growth in DC proper, the city's latest report from the Office of the Chief Financial Officer offers some projections for how the population will change over the next ten years.

Net migration into DC. Click to enlarge.

While DC’s population reached 705,749 people and grew for the 14th consecutive year in 2019, the 4,202 year-over-year increase was the smallest observed in 12 years. Negative net migration from elsewhere in the country over the past two years is largely to blame; since 2018, immigration is the only reason DC's population has grown. Natural population growth, or the number of births minus the number of deaths, has been holding steady around 4,000 annually.

Domestic vs. international net migration into DC. Click to enlarge.

Population growth is expected to remain slow, according to firms IHS Markit and Moody's Analytics. Those two firms respectively estimate the 2022 population to be 717,084 and 721,975, each with an increase smaller than one percent annually from 2019 until then.

Ten-year forecasts vary more widely. IHS Markit projects a 2020 population of 711,790 and a 2030 population of 744,390. Meanwhile, Moody's projects a 2020 population of 713,400 and a 2030 population of 781,000, noting that net migration will increase slightly during this period, accounting for 30,000 of this ten-year population increase.

The Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments (COG) projects the largest population increases for the city. Their predictions put the 2020 population at 729,500 and the 2030 population at 842,200. COG's forecast assumes continued annual net migration of 7,000 per year, although that is based on the pace of growth from 2000-2008. COG has also previously projected that DC will have a population approaching 1 million residents by 2045.

See other articles related to: demographics, population

This article originally published at https://dc.urbanturf.com/articles/blog/740000_or_840000_dcs_varying_ten_year_population_projections/16568.

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