The Recovery of Downtown vs Cleveland and Cincinnati Part #2- Update




Part #2 looks more specifically at the Downtown area of the 3-Cs.

**Updated with 2016 data. Originally posted in 2013.

First, let’s look at the total Downtown populations since 1950.

This graph, I think, will surprise most people. The first surprise is that downtown populations in 1950 were not nearly as high as most would have you believe. Cincinnati did have almost 22K people there, but even a city like Cleveland had less than 10K, and that was during the absolute peak of its city population. Another surprise is that Columbus was not always the lowest populated downtown and was more populated than Cleveland’s in 1950. Finally, the last surprise is that while all the downtowns are now growing, Columbus has regained 2nd place and Cleveland has seen the most growth so far.

What about tract trends for the downtowns? Well first, here are the population trends for each downtown.


For Cincinnati, Tracts #4 and #6 were combined into #265 in 2010.

So no city had a single Downtown tract that was not growing in 2010, and that trend largely continued through 2016. The drop of one of Cincinnati’s downtown tracts is probably an error of the estimates rather than a true, sharp population decline.

Here is the total population change by Downtown.

Finally, I wanted to look at more of the downtown area than just the central business district. “Downtown” for many includes more areas than that and may be a “Greater Downtown Area”, the measurement between the full 1950 boundaries and just the CBD.

Here are the tracts I considered to be the Greater Downtown area for each city.

Cincinnati: 2, 9, 10, 11, 263, 264, 265, 268
Cleveland: 1033, 1036, 1042, 1071, 1077, 1078, 1082, 1083, 1084
Columbus: 21, 22, 29, 30, 36, 38, 40, 42, 52, 53, 57

And the graph for the population of these tracts since 1950 through 2016.

Cincinnati reached it’s lowest population for the past 60 years for this area in 2010, but just barely. It grew slightly since 2010. Cleveland’s greater downtown had the bottomed out in 1990 and had the fasted growth the past decade. Columbus managed to maintain the highest population in its greater downtown, bottomed out in 2000 and has grown since. However, not nearly as fast as in Cleveland.




The Recovery of Downtown vs Cleveland and Cincinnati Part #1- Update




**Updated with 2016 data, originally posted 2013.

Columbus’ downtown has seen many many changes, especially over the last decade. Developments like the Arena District, Columbus Commons, the Scioto Mile and more have brought new life to the area. Dozens of new restaurants have opened the past year or two alone, and a new grocery store will be opening for area residents in February. More developments coming up include the Scioto River restoration project that will create acres of new Downtown park space and pathways, and the redevelopment of the Scioto Peninsula behind COSI should connect the two sides of the river. All of this had led to rising population, now approaching 8,500. Nearly 3,000 residential units are currently under construction or planned. So the question I was wondering is how has population been changing not only in Columbus’ downtown, but in comparison to Cleveland and Cincinnati. Both of those cities have also seen major projects in their downtown cores and are seeing an uptick in their downtown populations.

First, I examined the 1950 city limits for all three cities. This was the last census year before sprawl really took hold and changed the city dynamics and growth patterns. 1950 is also when most cities in Ohio reached their peak urban population, so I thought it would be interesting to see how those old boundaries had changed over the years. I went to the US census website and began to look up all the census tracts that existed in each city in 1950. Those would represent my base area that I would use to see the changes in the city core. All of the 3-Cs have grown beyond those 1950 boundaries, especially Columbus, but these areas were the hardest hit when the urban decline came the last 50-60 years while the suburbs grew. The results are both sobering and hopeful.

1950 Boundary Population Change 1950-2016
Cincinnati: -224,119
Cleveland: -540,935
Columbus: -138,491

1950 Boundary Population Change 2010-2016
Cincinnati: +1,370
Cleveland: -7,028
Columbus: +2,637

1950 Boundary Population % Change 1950-2016
Cincinnati: -44.5%
Cleveland: -59.1.%
Columbus: -36.9%

1950 Boundary Population % Change 2010-2016
Cincinnati: +0.5%
Cleveland: -1.9%
Columbus: +1.1%

So what do these numbers show? Well, it’s clear that all 3 cities had urban core population declines the past 65+ years just like just about every other city in the nation did. This was mostly a result of the suburban movement.
In Cleveland, the rate of loss had gradually been slowing down since the 1970s, but suddenly skyrocketed again in the 2000s. I’m not sure what exactly caused this. The double recessions made it more difficult for people to move, so if anything, the losses should’ve not accelerated. Cleveland lost over 90,000 people in its urban core from 2000-2010, the highest lost by % and total of any Ohio city.
In Cincinnati, population loss had peaked in the 1970s and the rate of loss fell substantially the following decade. However, the past 2 decades have actually seen a gradual acceleration of losses. The 2000-2010 period saw the second biggest total loss for the urban core, but there has been a significant turnaround (if estimates are correct) and the city is seeing growth now.
For Columbus, it’s been the opposite picture. Like the other 2-Cs, losses peaked in the 1970s. Since then, the urban core losses have been in gradual decline. The 2000-2010 period had the smallest rate and total loss of any decade the past 65+ years, and since 2010, there has been net growth.

So interesting results, but these numbers don’t show any trends of what’s going on inside the 1950 boundaries, especially not the relatively small part that would be the downtowns. So let’s break the numbers down to the tract level.

# of Tracts in 1950*
Cincinnat: 107
Cleveland: 201
Columbus: 48

*The number of tracts changed from 1950 on as some were split or consolidated. This made it more complicated, but luckily the Census gives lists on how tracts changed over time, so one can figure out what tract became what and reasonably keep up with the same boundaries that existed in 1950.

So with this breakdown, we can see more of the trends within the 1950 boundaries. In Cincinnati, a long decline was followed by a recovery in 1990, only to have the next 20 years show an increasing decline. The 2010 census showed the fewest number of tracts growing on record. This is the worst performance of the 3-Cs. Cleveland also had a steep decline followed by a recovery, but it too declined more at the last census, but not nearly to the low point it reached in the 1970s and 1980s.

Meanwhile, Columbus also faced an initial steep decline and barely had any tracts growing during the 1970s. Since then, the trend has been up. The 16 growing tracts in 2010 were the highest since the 1940s. This is the best performance of the 3-Cs, and Columbus had the highest % of growing tracts in its core. Still, those 16 represent less than 1/3rd of the total tracts within the 1950 boundaries. However, in the case of all 3 cities, the 2010-2016 has greatly increased the number of growing tracts, again if we are to believe the Census estimates.




The Origins of the Columbus Metro’s Domestic Migration




Top 30 Largest Net Domestic In-Migration Origins (Ohio Counties and States)

Numbers are based on estimates. Updated 1/24/2018 with 2011-2015 data.

2006-2010————————2009-2013—————————-2011-2015
1. Cuyahoga: 1602———-1. Cuyahoga: 1905————–1. Cuyahoga: 1842
2. Montgomery: 1020——-2. Michigan: 1425—————-2. Michigan: 1239
3. Michigan: 893————-3. Montgomery: 1123————3. Montgomery: 1088
4. Maryland: 745————-4. Summit: 744——————–4. Summit: 764
5. Lorain: 740—————–5. Lorain: 715———————-5. Lucas: 626
6. Virginia: 636—————6. Indiana: 694———————6. New Jersey: 608
7. Mahoning: 603————7. Lucas: 569———————–7. New York: 575
8. Stark: 584——————8. Maryland: 512——————-8. Medina: 572
9. Lucas: 554—————–9. Hamilton: 504——————–9. Stark: 484
10. Summit: 531————-10. Clermont: 466—————–10. Trumbull: 465
11. Highland: 499———–11. Stark: 466———————–11. Maryland: 464
12. New Jersey: 497——-12. Arizona: 463——————–12. Allen: 406
13. Hamilton: 483———–13. Alabama: 431——————-13. Washington (state): 399
14. New York: 419———-14. Trumbull: 401——————-14. Erie: 386
15. Allen: 384—————-15. Mahoning: 387——————15. Indiana: 386
16. Tennessee: 375——–16. Fayette: 354———————16. Massachusetts: 384
17. Logan: 328—————17. Washington (state): 353—–17. Pennsylvania: 371
18. Trumbull: 325————18. Coshocton: 346—————-18. Kentucky: 368
19. Coshocton: 310———19. Medina: 322——————–19. W. Virginia: 339
20. Jefferson: 290———–20. Allen: 302————————20. Lake: 316
21. Scioto: 259—————21. Erie: 290————————-21. Belmont: 314
22. Belmont: 254————22. Highland: 270——————-22. Wayne: 298
23. Huron: 245—————23. Puerto Rico: 265—————23. Fayette: 290
24. Darke: 217—————24. Adams: 260———————24. Mahoning: 289
25. Lake: 212—————-25. Warren: 260———————25. New Hampshire: 288
26. Tuscarawas: 202——-26. Massachusetts: 259———-26. Alaska: 282
27. Iowa: 200—————–27. Wayne: 259———————27. Alabama: 280
28. Shelby: 199————–28. Morgan: 255——————–28. Lorain: 277
29. Medina: 196————-29. Tuscarawas: 253————–29. Tuscarawas: 277
30. Massachusetts: 192—30. Ashtabula: 244—————–30. Geauga: 261

Top 30 Largest Net Domestic Out-Migration Destinations (Ohio counties and States)

2006-2010——————————-2009-2013—————————-2011-2015
1. Texas: -1371———————-1. Georgia: -1024—————-1. Florida: -1333
2. Knox: -942————————-2. Florida: -1013——————2. Missouri: -703
3. North Carolina: -782————3. Greene: -524——————-3. Georgia: -680
4. Georgia: -718———————4. Missouri: -516——————4. Athens: -607
5. Athens: -679———————-5. Colorado: -448—————–5. Knox: -506
6. Kentucky: -516——————-6. California: -436—————–6. Tennessee: -442
7. South Carolina: -499———–7. South Carolina: -431———-7. Colorado: -435
8. California: -364——————-8. Knox: -418———————-8. California: -391
9. Florida: -360———————-9. North Carolina: -417———-9. Greene: -388
10. Wood: -351———————10. Wisconsin: -395————–10. South Carolina: -362
11. Richland: -344——————11. Athens: -336——————11. Marion: -329
12. Greene: -239——————–12. Minnesota: -308————-12. Hamilton: -312
13. West Virginia: -236————13. Utah: -290———————13. Logan: -306
14. Missouri: -219——————-14. Richland: -266—————14. Utah: -300
15. Crawford: -209——————15. Portage: -265—————–15. Wood: -282
16. Hardin: -179———————16. Kentucky: -257—————16. Scioto: -249
17. Noble: -177———————-17. Logan: -242——————-17. Seneca: -183
18. Muskingum: -175—————18. Pennsylvania: -242———18. Champaign: -174
19. Butler: -173———————-19. Tennessee: -200————19. Oregon: -158
20. Holmes: -163——————–20. Oregon: -187—————-20. New Mexico: -157
21. Marion: -138———————21. Wood: -166——————21. Meigs: -150
22. Portage: -134——————-22. Sandusky: -157————–22. Mississippi: -146
23. Ottawa: -131——————–23. Mississippi: -151————-23. Portage: -142
24. Sandusky: -124—————-24. Jefferson: -127—————24. Idaho: -137
25. Oregon: -120——————-25. Kansas: -98——————-25. Minnesota: -125
26. Indiana: -116——————-26. Delaware (state): -88——-26. North Dakota: -112
27. Idaho: -115———————27. Idaho: -74———————-27. Wisconsin: -111
28. Utah: -103———————- 28. Crawford: -73—————–28. Darke: -103
29. Fayette: -93———————29. Hardin: -68——————–29. Texas: -95
30. Kansas: -90———————30. Seneca: -66——————-30. Hardin: -87

Top 25 Largest Positive Swings Between 2006-2010 and 2011-2015
1. Texas: +1276
2. North Carolina: +982
3. Kentucky: +884
4. West Virginia: +575
5. Indiana: +502
6. Washington (state): +466
7. Knox: +436
8. Richland: +406
9. Butler: +395
10. Fayette: +383
11. Medina: +376
12. Alaska: +364
13. Michigan: +346
14. Alabama: +298
15. Clinton: +282
16. Erie: +263
17. New Hampshire: +261
18. Lawrence: +241
19. Cuyahoga: +240
20. Summit: +233
21. Wayne: +226
22. Crawford: +221
23. Muskingum: +211
24. Clermont: +198
25. Nevada: +197

Top 25 Largest Negative Swings Between 2006-2010 and 2011-2015
1. Florida: -973
2. Tennessee: -817
3. Hamilton: -795
4. Logan: -634
5. Colorado: -598
6. Scioto: -508
7. Highland: -491
8. Missouri: -484
9. Lorain: -463
10. Virginia: -437
11. Darke: -320
12. Mahoning: -314
13. Champaign: -310
14. Jefferson: -301
15. Maryland: -281
16. New Mexico: -261
17. Minnesota: -249
19. Coshocton: -233
20. Washington (county): -208
21. Ashland: -202
22. Utah: -197
23. Marion: -191
24. Seneca: -181
25. Iowa: -158

Total Counts By Period
Positive Ohio Counties
2006-2010: 53
2009-2013: 57
2011-2015: 50

Positive States, including DC and Puerto Rico
2006-2010: 21
2009-2013: 24
2011-2015: 28

Total Net In-Migration
Ohio
2006-2010: +8,008
2009-2013: +11,366
2011-2015: +7,895

Outside Ohio
2006-2010: -1,158
2009-2013: -466
2011-2015: +1,598

Ohio and Outside Ohio
2006-2010: +6,850
2009-2013: +10,900
2011-2015: +9,493

All these figures show that the Columbus metro has net positive domestic migration. While the majority of that comes from within the state, Columbus’ previously negative net total from outside the state has more recently become positive as well. For a long time, Columbus’ relative success was not well-known outside of the state, but perhaps word is finally getting out.

For a lot more Columbus demographic information, check out: Columbus Demographics




Where Racial Groups are Growing Fastest in Franklin County




The US Census recently released updated estimates for 2016 for smaller-area designations like tracts and blocks. Looking at them, I wanted to see where individual racial groups were growing the fastest at that level.
The first map is based on the % change from 2010 to 2016.

What’s interesting about this map is that it is such a hodgepodge. No single part of the county is dominated by growth in any specific racial group. However, a few things can be generally determined. For example, almost all of the tracts where the White population is growing the fastest are within I-270, and the majority of those within the eastern half of the Columbus in what have long been dominated by Black majority populations. These areas include parts of Linden, the Near South and Near East sides. That said, the White population was growing the fastest in just 30 census tracts by % change. This compared to 53 for the Black population, 83 for the Asian population and 107 for the Hispanic population.

The next map takes a slightly different approach, measuring the TOTAL change in population, rather than by %.

Again, a hodgepodge, but much less so than before. Instead of being the fastest-growing in just 30 tracts, the White population rockets up to 108 tracts. This shows that, while Asian and Hispanic populations have respectable % growth, this is largely based on comparatively small population bases. Still, non-White populations are clearly making inroads throughout Franklin County.

For more information on demographics, go to: Columbus Demographics
And for Franklin County racial and economic maps, go to: Census Tract and Zip Code Maps




Young Professionals: A Comparison

**Updated 11/22/2017.

Millennials and Young Professionals are big news these days. Millennials are the largest generation ever in terms of total numbers (exceeding 76 million), and their choices are already having big impacts on everything from housing to the economy, and Young Professionals have long been an important urban demographic. I wanted to look at Columbus and its peers to see where it ranks in terms of attracting the 25-34 age group that include these demographics.

For the comparison, I looked at metro areas of 1.5-2.5 million as well as major Midwest metros and then used their core cities to get the numbers.

Rank of Total Population Aged 25-34

2005_______________________2010___________________2016

1. Chicago: 463,236_______1. Chicago: 510,042________1. Chicago: 532,349
2. San Antonio: 180,981_____2. San Antonio: 200,645____2. San Antonio: 241,783
3. Austin: 137,523_________3. Austin: 162,247_________3. Austin: 214,687
4. San Jose, CA: 133,144___4. Columbus: 147,584______4. Columbus: 180,685
5. Columbus: 131,641______5. San Jose, CA: 142,551___5. San Jose, CA: 165,408
6. Indianapolis: 114,532_____6. Indianapolis: 133,088____6. Charlotte, NC: 149,024
7. Detroit: 110,759_________7. Charlotte, NC: 127,539___7. Indianapolis: 143,328
8. Charlotte, NC: 100,025____8. Portland, OR: 113,210___8. Nashville: 130,593
9. Portland, OR: 90,023_____9. Nashville: 110,882______9. Portland: 127,557
10. Las Vegas: 84,418______10. Milwaukee: 97,359____10. Milwaukee: 101,449
11. Milwaukee: 82,060______11. Detroit: 85,023_______11. Detroit: 101,246
12. Sacramento, CA: 75,497___12. Minneapolis: 81,532__12. Sacramento: 92,883
13. Minneapolis: 74,208___13. Las Vegas: 81,212______13. Minneapolis: 90,022
14. Kansas City, MO: 68,060__14. Sacramento: 78,527__14. Las Vegas: 84,756
15. Virginia Beach: 60,749__15. Kansas City: 73,872____15. Kansas City: 81,532
16. Omaha, NE: 56,248____16. Virginia Beach: 67,614__16. Virginia Beach: 75,365
17. Wichita, KS: 52,426____17. Omaha: 62,396________17. Omaha: 72,055
18. Cleveland: 50,558_____18. St. Louis: 57,627_______18. Orlando: 63,947
19. St. Louis: 48,137______19. Wichita: 56,737________19. Pittsburgh: 62,515
20. Cincinnati: 44,945_____20. Cleveland: 54,428______20. St. Louis: 61,777
21. Toledo: 43,134_______21. Pittsburgh: 51,109______21. Cleveland: 58,773
22. Orlando: 40,846______22. St. Paul: 50,107________22. Wichita: 57,869
23. St. Paul, MN: 39,676__23. Cincinnati: 49,067_______23. St. Paul: 55,306
24. Lincoln, NE: 38,893___24. Orlando: 48,102________24. Cincinnati: 54,754
25. Madison, WI: 38,826___25. Madison: 44,662_______25. Madison: 48,759
26. Pittsburgh: 38,744____26. Lincoln: 42,034_________26. Lincoln: 43,882
27. Grand Rapids: 35,287__27. Toledo: 41,580________27: Toledo: 42,888
28. Des Moines: 32,640__28. Fort Wayne: 35,193______28. Grand Rapids: 39,829
29. Fort Wayne, IN: 31,738__29. Providence: 31,044____29. Fort Wayne: 37,372
30. Akron: 30,436_______30. Grand Rapids: 30,963____30. Des Moines: 34,961
31. Providence, RI: 29,307__31. Des Moines: 30,376____31. Providence: 30,630
32. Dayton: 18,591_______32. Akron: 27,446_________32. Akron: 29,786
33. Youngstown: 8,505____33. Dayton: 20,278________33. Dayton: 22,930
34. Nashville, TN: N/A___34. Youngtown: 8,484_______34. Youngstown: 7,621

So Columbus ranks highly among total population in the 25-34 age group. But what about growth?

Total Growth Rank in 25-34 Population 2005-2016

1. Austin, TX: 77,164
2. Chicago: 69,113
3. San Antonio, TX: 60,802
4. Columbus: 49,044
5. Charlotte, NC: 48,999
6. Portland, OR: 37,534
7. San Jose, CA: 32,264
8. Indianapolis, IN: 28,796
9. Pittsburgh, PA: 23,771
10. Orlando, FL: 23,101
11. Milwaukee, WI: 19,389
12. Sacramento, CA: 17,386
13. Minneapolis, MN: 15,814
14. Omaha, NE: 15,807
15. St. Paul, MN: 15,630
16. Virginia Beach, VA: 14,616
17. St. Louis, MO: 13,642
18. Kansas City, MO: 13,472
19. Madison, WI: 9,933
20. Cincinnati: 9,809
21. Cleveland: 8,215
22. Fort Wayne, IN: 5,634
23. Wichita, KS: 5,443
24. Lincoln, NE: 4,989
25. Grand Rapids, MI: 4,542
26. Dayton: 4,339
27. Des Moines, IA: 2,321
28. Providence, RI: 1,323
29. Las Vegas, NV: 338
30. Toledo: -246
31. Akron: -650
32. Youngstown: -884
33. Detroit, MI: -9,513
34. Nashville: N/A

Again, Columbus ranks near the top during this period. What about more recently, since 2010?

Total Growth Rank of 25-34 Population 2010-2016

1. Austin: 52,440
2. San Antonio: 41,138
3. Columbus: 33,101
4. San Jose: 22,857
5. Chicago: 22,307
6. Charlotte: 21,485
7. Nashville: 19,711
8. Detroit: 16,223
9. Orlando: 15,845
10. Sacramento: 14,356
11. Portland: 14,347
12. Pittsburgh: 11,406
13. Indianapolis: 10,240
14. Omaha: 9,659
15. Grand Rapids: 8,866
16. Minneapolis: 8,490
17. Virginia Beach: 7,751
18. Kansas City: 7,660
19. Cincinnati: 5,687
20. St. Paul: 5,199
21. Des Moines: 4,585
22. Cleveland: 4,345
23. St. Louis: 4,152
24. Madison: 4,097
25. Milwaukee: 4,090
26. Las Vegas: 3,544
27. Dayton: 2,652
28. Akron: 2,340
29. Fort Wayne: 2,179
30. Lincoln: 1,848
31. Toledo: 1,308
32. Wichita: 1,132
33. Providence: -414
34. Youngstown: -863

So Columbus is also doing well since 2010 and attracts significantly more people in the 25-34 age group than cities often cited for this very metric.

Finally, now that we know the totals and the growth, what is the % of total city population that the 25-34 age group makes up?

25-34 % of Total City Population 2016

1. Orlando: 23.1%
2. Austin: 22.6%
3. Minneapolis: 21.8%
4. Columbus: 20.9%
5. Pittsburgh: 20.6%
6. Grand Rapids: 20.3%
7. Portland: 19.9%
8. Nashville: 19.8%
9. St. Louis: 19.8%
10. Chicago: 19.7%
11. Madison: 19.3%
12. Sacramento: 18.8%
13. Cincinnati: 18.3%
14. St. Paul: 18.3%
15. Charlotte: 17.7%
16. Providence: 17.1%
17. Milwaukee: 17.0%
18. Kansas City: 16.9%
19. Indianapolis: 16.8%
20. Virginia Beach: 16.7%
21. Des Moines: 16.2%
22. San Antonio: 16.2%
23. Omaha: 16.1%
24. San Jose: 16.1%
25. Lincoln: 15.7%
26. Toledo: 15.4%
27. Cleveland: 15.2%
28. Akron: 15.1%
29. Detroit: 15.0%
30. Wichita: 14.8%
31. Fort Wayne: 14.3%
32. Las Vegas: 13.4%
33. Youngstown: 11.9%
34. Dayton: 8.2%

Columbus has an existing large population of the 25-34 age demographic, and looks to be one of the strongest performers into the near future.
Some would ask why that would be considering that Columbus transit is woefully lacking and has a reputation (very undeservedly, in my opinion) of being suburban- characteristics that Millennials/YPers supposedly almost universally reject. Perhaps the bottom line is that economics trump all other desires. Cost of living and employment tend to be higher up the list than rail lines, and Columbus has both a strong economy and relatively low COL. Whatever the case may be, Columbus seems to be doing something right.

For more information on demographics, go to: Columbus Demographics
And for Franklin County racial and economic maps, go to: Census Tract and Zip Code Maps