Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Dwindling Heartland

I have noted before that rural America is not always what the imagine or remember it to be.  The often sited decline of the city, is the gain of the suburbs.  It is not the gain of the countryside.

As the 2010 census data comes out a variety of trends are shown to continue.

Population Leaves Heartland Behind
Conor Dougherty, Wall Street Journal, April 11, 2001

The U.S. population grew by 27 million over the decade, to 308 million. But growth was unevenly distributed. Metropolitan areas, defined as the collection of small cities and suburbs that surround an urban core with at least 50,000 people, accounted for most of the gain, growing 10.8% over the decade to 257.7 million people.

Rural areas, meanwhile, grew just 4.5% to 51 million. Many regions—from the Great Plains to the Mississippi Delta to rural New England—saw population declines. About 46% of rural counties lost population in the decade, including almost 60% of rural counties that aren't adjacent to a metro area, according to an analysis of Census data by Kenneth Johnson, senior demographer at the Carsey Institute at the University of New Hampshire.
The population is shifting to the South, and we are becoming much more racially diverse.

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