Who’s coming to Austin?

During the last decade, the six-county Austin region has generally met its rapid growth expectations, adding over 50,000 people annually. Over the next ten years, this is expected to pick up slightly with the region expected to add about 57,620 people every year, according to the 2000-2010 trend scenario projections from Texas State Demographer’s office.

Today the Austin region remains a non-Hispanic white majority (52%) metropolitan region. Of the nine large metros in Texas, only Killeen-Temple and Austin remain majority white, while the rest of the state outside the nine large metros is 56% non-hispanic white.

Should the Austin region grow as expected through 2027, it will join Houston and Dallas-Fort Worth as the majority-less pluralistic society that is also America’s future, as noted so beautifully by Rice University Kinder Institute’s Dr. Stephen Klineberg.

The Austin region’s Black population will experience a slightly higher percent growth rate than their non-Hispanic White neighbors over the next ten years. Hispanics will experience a much higher rate of growth, and others – primarily Asians – will grow most rapidly compared to their existing population. In terms of absolute growth, Hispanics will make up a slight majority of the region’s immigrants and a stronger majority of the region’s growth from natural increase – seeing more babies than deaths.

As Dr. Klineberg has often said of Houston, the institutions and policies of the Austin region’s urban planning and transportation decision making systems must transform to embrace of our pluralist future:

“Every business in Houston is either going to learn how to capitalize on this burgeoning diversity in the city or find it harder and harder to grow their business. Every institution, every organization, every central major structure in Houston was built by, for and on behalf of Anglos. Every one of them has to transform itself to become Houston’s institution.”

– Dr. Stephen Klineberg, Rice University Kinder Institute for Urban Research

Growing Weirder is a series of reports and events intended to empower the people of the Austin region with better shared understanding of regional growth and the growth policy choices we will make over the next several years.

[Photo Credit: City of Round Rock, Some rights reserved]