Demographics

Jun 30, 2017
One Sun Belt city was built on a swamp, the other on rolling Piedmont farmland. But Houston not only has some surprising similarities to Charlotte, it may offer a glimpse of the Queen City's future.
Jun 15, 2017
Population growth in Charlotte and Raleigh continues apace, driving rapid growth into areas nearby. Example: The historic city of Hickory is now smaller than the former hamlet of Huntersville.  
Aug 25, 2016
Many parts of the Carolinas, including the Charlotte region, are seeing a huge influx of newcomers. Who’s moving in, and from where? An Oct. 26 symposium will look at new census data on population changes.
Nov 10, 2015
Dr. Alfred Stuart, professor emeritus of geography and earth sciences, had a long and distinguished career at UNC Charlotte. We should take a minute to appreciate and celebrate his accomplishments, many of which still have an impact on our region and state. 
Oct 15, 2015
Nearly 200 people attended the third annual Charlotte Data Day on Oct. 6 -7. The event featured Richard Fry, a Pew Research Center expert on the Millennial generation, and sessions on demographic data and research.
Sep 17, 2015
A researcher who studies the Millennial generation will be a featured speaker at the third annual Charlotte Data Day conference Oct. 6-7. The conference, presented by the UNC Charlotte Urban Institute and the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, is free and open to the public.  
Jul 14, 2015
The building of I-485 was one of the forces shaping Mecklenburg County growth patterns over a quarter century. Some areas near I-485 grew more than 1,000 percent. Our interactive map shows 30 years of population growth in Mecklenburg and nearby counties.
May 06, 2015
No single factor can define a “healthy community.” The newly updated Charlotte-Mecklenburg Quality of Life Explorer lets viewers assess a wide variety of community issues and indicators.
Apr 15, 2015
Just when many demographers were speculating that suburban growth was waning, the latest Census Bureau population estimates show a rebound. In the Charlotte region, for the first time since 2010, adjacent counties' growth rates have leapfrogged Mecklenburg's. 
Apr 13, 2015
This week’s map shows high school graduation rates at the school level and presents the latest numbers for various demographic groups.
Apr 06, 2015
This week’s map continues exploring high school graduation rates across the state and presents the latest numbers for various demographic groups.
Dec 05, 2014
We know Charlotte is growing, but where do all these new residents come from? Interactive maps and charts let you explore the answer.  
Oct 15, 2014
When Lake Norman flooded parts of four counties in 1963 a 660-acre area of Mecklenburg County was cut off from the rest of the county. It was accessible only by boat or a 12-mile trip through Iredell County. This became a source of conflict between Iredell and Mecklenburg counties for decades before the two counties reached a solution in 1997.
Oct 07, 2014
The first decade of growth on the lake had been slow—a cluster of cabins here and a marina there. The lack of infrastructure and the distance from major population centers kept growth in check.
Sep 24, 2014
Recently the site FiveThirtyEight.com reported that of the largest U.S. metros, only Charlotte’s median income, “experienced a statistically significant decline” in 2013. What’s going on?
Jun 19, 2014
An audience of 178 housing experts, government analysts, nonprofit leaders and others attended the second annual Charlotte Data Day on June 17 at UNC Charlotte Center City Building. (Some presentations now available online.)
Jun 19, 2014
PlanCharlotte kicks off an occasional series of conversations with planners around the metro region. The first visit is with Keith Wolf of Albemarle, a town dealing with slow population growth. (Photo: Chuck McShane) 
Jun 04, 2014
Does your business or nonprofit use housing data? Would you like to learn more about how to use local and national housing data more effectively?
Apr 03, 2014
Since 2010, the home counties of Charlotte and Raleigh have accounted for nearly half of all population growth in North Carolina. Just 10 N.C. counties tallied nearly 80 percent of the state's increased population. (Image: John Chesser, Tableau maps)
Feb 25, 2014
CONNECT Our Future, a long-term regional planning process for the 14-county Charlotte region, will host several forums in March. Project organizers will ask attendees for opinions on four growth scenarios for the region. Here's how to attend one of the forums. (Photo: Nancy Pierce)
Feb 12, 2014
The UNC Charlotte Urban Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan applied research institute offering consulting services and public outreach for more than 40 years. We provide research and information to help the public understand the Charlotte region. Through our websites we offer articles and data on a range of issues that could be useful to neighborhood groups. (Image: Dylan McKnight) 
Oct 03, 2013
Population growth in Charlotte has always come with plenty of costs, but rising incomes and prosperity were part of the expected returns. Yet during the recent economic downturn, as population growth continued, economic growth sputtered. (Photo: Nancy Pierce)
Aug 29, 2013
Click here to read the article that explains this data dashboard.
Aug 29, 2013
Between 2006 and 2013, the rate of N.C. high school students graduating on time (in four years) rose from 68.3 percent to 82.5 percent. The state's two largest districts, Wake and Charlotte-Mecklenburg, now have the same rate, 81 percent. Explore data for all N.C. districts with our interactive dashboards. (Photo: iStock)
Aug 29, 2013
Click here to read the article that explains this data dashboard.
Jul 18, 2013
The question is widely debated among experts and in the press. Do surveys showing more preference for walkable, in-town neighborhoods measure a fleeting fad, or portend the end of suburbia? A UNC Charlotte geographer looks deeper. (Photo: Nancy Pierce)
Jun 14, 2013
You’d think I would have known better. I’ve been writing about growth since before they called it Smart Growth. That’s why last week’s regional planning exercise made for an eye-opening glimpse of the real world. (Photo: Melissa Currie)
Jun 05, 2013
How can the Charlotte region prepare for the thousands of new jobs and houses expected to come here? RealityCheck2050, part of the CONNECT process, let regional participants develop their own versions of the future. (Photo: Melissa Currie)
May 31, 2013
Aided by a $5 million federal grant, residents and businesses throughout the 14-county Charlotte region are engaged in a process to envision the region's best future and create a roadmap for getting there. This interactive article describes the process, plans and players for CONNECT Our Future. (Photo: Nancy Pierce)
May 02, 2013
Changes to how metropolitan areas are defined added nearly a half-million people to Charlotte’s MSA, making it the 23rd most populous in the country. How did the changes affect Charlotte's peer metro areas such as Atlanta (pictured)? (Photo: dbking, used under CC-BY-2.0)
Apr 02, 2013
In January, Charlotte had 1.8 million people. Today it has 2.3 million people. And no, there was no airlift of half a million residents from the Rust Belt or anywhere else. How can a city gain a half-million people almost overnight? (Staff photo)
Mar 28, 2013
In January, the Charlotte metro area population was 1.8 million people. In February, the metro area population was 2.3 million. Where did the half-million people come from? New boundaries were drawn for metropolitan statistical areas. (Photo: Downtown Chester, S.C., in Chester County, which was added to the Charlotte MSA. / Nancy Pierce)
Mar 28, 2013
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 153,015 individuals who worked in Mecklenburg County commuted from another county in the Charlotte MSA – among the highest number of county-to-county commuters in the U.S. (Photo: Nancy Pierce) 
Mar 20, 2013
Of metro areas with more than 1 million people, Charlotte ranked ninth nationally in population growth from 2011 to 2012. That growth was strongest at the center of the metro area, in Mecklenburg County, which outpaced the suburban counties in the region for the second year. (Image: Bing maps)
Mar 19, 2013
In conjunction with the photographic exhibit, Favelas: Architecture of Survival, the UNC Charlotte College of Arts + Architecture will hold a reception Friday, 6-8 p.m., at the Projective Eye Gallery at UNC Charlotte Center City.
Feb 28, 2013
Huntersville Town Hall was the setting for Wednesday afternoon’s public information meeting about HOT (High Occupancy Toll) lanes proposed on I-77. HOT lanes are a red-hot topic, and citizens were vocal about their concerns. Is the region ready to accept pay-as-you-go highways? (Photo: Melissa Currie)
Feb 20, 2013
On March 26 the UNC Charlotte Urban Institute, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, City of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County will host a forum in uptown Charlotte designed to tell the public about powerful sources of data and how to use them.
Feb 18, 2013
The new Quality of Life Dashboard is designed to assess the health of neighborhoods in Charlotte-Mecklenburg. Users of previous reports were familiar with the old neighborhood names, so we created some tools to help you find your neighborhood in the new system.
Feb 14, 2013
Times have been tough in the local economy, but it looks as if we’ve finally turned the corner. If growth is starting to make a comeback, exactly where will it be? Is your county ready? (Photo:  U.S. Census Bureau, Public Information Office)
Feb 04, 2013
New single-family residential building permits in Mecklenburg County have been on a roller coaster ride since 2003. But preliminary numbers show a promising upswing heading into 2013. Using U.S. Census Bureau data1 to examine the previous decade's trends tracking back to 2003, what can we expect for new construction as we move forward in 2013?
Jan 29, 2013
Maps of student scores reveal patterns of high achievement in northern and southern parts of Mecklenburg County and a more complex mix of high and low scoring schools within Charlotte. (Photo: Nancy Pierce)
Dec 06, 2012
When I moved to Charlotte more than 30 years ago, Matthews was the suburb. Years of attracting people looking for a small town and a private getaway have built a fabric of large lawns and scattered houses, and more lawns and more houses. Where does a it go from here?
Nov 15, 2012
By 2011, the average American was driving 6 percent fewer miles per year than in 2004 – with Echo Boomers leading the trend. Here in Mecklenburg County, however, younger drivers are on the road more, not less.
Nov 12, 2012
For many reasons, more Americans are renting their homes today compared to recent years. How does that reality square with long-held perceptions about homeowners versus renters?
Nov 07, 2012
Commuting stories – we’ve all got one.  How does your commute time stack up to your fellow Mecklenburg resident?  Check out our maps, using 2010 U.S. Census data to break down average commute times.
Oct 02, 2012
The Charlotte metro was definitely a hotbed of growth for the state during the past decade. But the pattern within the metro region is uneven, with much of the strongest population increases concentrated in areas north and south of Charlotte.
Aug 08, 2012
How much are homes in your neighborhood worth? The era of upside-down mortgages and foreclosures has left homeowners across the country anxious about home values – theirs and their neighbors'. In the midst of this housing market upheaval, explosive growth in the Charlotte region has reshaped residential patterns.
Apr 18, 2012
Where are urban regions growing – in their cores or suburbs? What is happening in rural areas? New population figures have fostered speculation about what growth in urban regions will be like in the future.  For rural parts of the Carolinas, the issue isn’t about growth at all, but widespread decline in population.
Apr 03, 2012
Recent headlines have trumpeted the U.S. Census finding that between 2000 and 2010, the Charlotte “urbanized area” was the nation’s fastest growing among areas with 1 million or more people. But it also highlighted the inconsistent, even chaotic, differences in how the so-called Charlotte region is defined.
Jan 25, 2012
UNC Charlotte's Heather Smith, a geographer who studies Hispanic "hyper-growth" in the South, talks about Charlotte's growing role as a "globalizing" – not a global – city, and why she wasn't surprised when the Democratic Party chose Charlotte for its national convention.