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[CENSUS] Closer Houston, but not quite...

Discussion in 'Other Sports' started by Dr of Dunk, Feb 17, 2011.

  1. Dr of Dunk

    Dr of Dunk Clutch Crew

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    There had been rumblings for the past few years that Houston could dethrone Chicago as the 3rd most populous city in the US, but they didn't quite do it. Of course, if you count metropolitan areas, Chicago dwarfs Houston's population, but still :

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/41653939/ns/us_news-life/

    -------------------------------------------------------------

    Census: Houston grows, but Chicago is still larger
    The largest city in Texas is staying put as the fourth-largest in the nation


    By JUAN A. LOZANO

    HOUSTON — Sorry Houston, maybe next decade.

    The largest city in Texas is staying put as the fourth-largest in the nation, falling just short of passing Chicago for No. 3, according to figures released Thursday by the U.S. Census Bureau.

    David Thompson, who helped organize a private city promotion program called "Houston. It's Worth It," acknowledged national perceptions might have started to change had Houston finally cracked the top three, joining New York and Los Angeles.

    "It does take something that large to get people to reposition us in their heads," Thompson said. "You are used to seeing New York, L.A., Chicago. To say New York, L.A., Houston — that would have been a big one."

    It almost happened. During the past decade, Houston grew by 7.4 percent to 2.09 million. While Chicago's population dropped by nearly 7 percent, it remained ahead of Houston at 2.7 million people.

    The Windy City got its other nickname, The Second City, more than a century ago for its runner-up status to New York in population. The name has stuck, but the status didn't. Los Angeles passed Chicago for No. 2 during the 1990 Census.

    Some demographers speculated this Census would effectively make Chicago the Fourth City, undoubtedly causing grumbles among Chicagoans who like to boast of having the country's tallest building, the second-largest Great Lake and of being the hometown of the nation's first black president.

    "When you go throughout the world and people ask you where you're from, and you say, 'Chicago,' you're proud to say it," said Bryan Kingsbury, 31, who has lived there for a decade.

    But Steve Murdock, a former Texas state demographer and previous director of the U.S Census Bureau, said while he wasn't shocked Chicago didn't slip, residents shouldn't feel too comfy at No. 3.

    "If Chicago doesn't change direction, it's obvious Houston could overtake Chicago and become bigger sometime in the next decade," Murdock said.

    Jeff Moseley, president and CEO of the Greater Houston Partnership, which promotes the city's business community, wasn't disappointed Houston failed to surpass Chicago.

    "We made dramatic strides. We knew it would be very, very difficult to overtake Chicago in this census take. Those of us who follow the numbers know it's just a matter of time," he said.

    Houston's growth this past decade was in line with recent Census counts. While the 1980s saw only a 2.2 percent population growth because of the oil bust, the 1990s saw an increase of 19.8 percent.

    Rice University sociology professor Stephen Klineberg credits Houston's continued growth to various factors, including: a lower unemployment rate than the rest of the country (8.1 percent compared to the national rate of 9 percent); a lower cost of living; and a continued influx of immigrants.

    Klineberg said while immigration slowed down because of the recession, it continues to play an important role in Houston's growth. The city is home to large populations of immigrants from Latin America and Asia.

    "The main advantage is Houston is the least expensive major city to live in," he said.

    Among the factors for Chicago's drops was an 18 percent decline in the city's black residents, many of whom left Illinois entirely and others who may have been affected by the demolition of the city's housing projects. While Chicago's Hispanic population grew from 2000 to 2010 — from 753,644 to 778,862 — the rate of growth slowed as many migrated out of the city, said Rob Paral, a Chicago-based demographer

    Bill King, a former Houston-area politician who runs a web site that focuses on local public policy issues, said credit for Houston's continued growth also has to be given to the oil industry.

    "At the end of the day it's the oil industry that drives Houston," King said.

    While 43 percent of Houston's primary sector jobs are tied to the oil and energy industry (down from 82 percent at the height of the oil boom), the challenge for the city will be whether it can make the transition to a post oil economy, Klineberg said.

    "The jury is out on that," he said.

    For some, Houston's failure to overtake Chicago fits in with the image many outsiders have of the city, not as one of the country's top urban areas but as a place known more for its pollution, stifling humidity, seemingly endless urban sprawl, miles and miles of freeways and patience testing traffic.

    Thompson, who used the city's perceived flaws to help promote it in his campaign, said he believes Houston will eventually overtake Chicago.

    "I think Houston is the last great American frontier," he said. "I mean that in terms of Houston having amazing opportunities down here. It's the best kept secret in the world for being the fourth largest city in the nation."

    But even if Houston ultimately becomes No. 3 in population list, Chicago (or at least its South Side) will always have one bragging right. The Chicago White Sox won the 2005 World Series against the Houston Astros.
     
  2. Kam

    Kam Contributing Member

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    Damn.

    We were only 60,000 short?
     
  3. Oski2005

    Oski2005 Contributing Member

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    Time to annex the suburbs.
     
  4. Xerobull

    Xerobull You son of a b!tch! I'm in!

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    I call shenanagins!
     
  5. Major

    Major Member

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    What??

    It almost happened. During the past decade, Houston grew by 7.4 percent to 2.09 million. While Chicago's population dropped by nearly 7 percent, it remained ahead of Houston at 2.7 million people.

    Being 600,000 people short of 3rd is not "almost happening". Houston would have to grow by another 28%!
     
    1 person likes this.
  6. R0ckets03

    R0ckets03 Contributing Member

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    2,700,000 - 2,090,000 = 610,000 genius. :p

    Unless I'm looking at it wrong. I don't see how that's really close? Chicago is almost 30% larger.
     
  7. Kam

    Kam Contributing Member

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    I see it now.

    I'd edit it, but it's been caught. Not going to worry.



    Hey guys did you know S Land Balla is from Chicago?
     
  8. Fatty FatBastard

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    You aren't watching the trend, my friend.

    Year Chicago Houston
    1850 30,000 2,400
    1860 112,000 4,500
    1870 299,000 9,300
    1880 503,000 16,500
    1890 1,099,000 27,500
    1900 1,698,000 44,600
    1910 2,185,000 78,800
    1920 2,701,000 138,200
    1930 3,376,000 292,000
    1940 3,376,000 384,000
    1950 3,620,000 596,000
    1960 3,550,000 940,000
    1970 3,360,000 1,200,000
    1980 3,000,000 1,600,000
    1990 2,780,000 1,630,000
    2000 2,890,000 1,953,000
    2010 2,700,000 2,070,000

    (In BOLD are the cities highest ever pop.)

    (sorry, I'm much better with excel...)
     
    #8 Fatty FatBastard, Feb 18, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2011
  9. R0ckets03

    R0ckets03 Contributing Member

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    wow...thats a significant decrease every decade. any particular reason?
     
  10. RocketMania1991

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    [​IMG]
     
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  11. R0ckets03

    R0ckets03 Contributing Member

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    which can easily be negated by the bulls.

    houston oilers, texans, rockets and astros aren't exactly attracting a boat load of people either.
     
  12. Dr of Dunk

    Dr of Dunk Clutch Crew

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    Houston has Mexico.
     
  13. Fatty FatBastard

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    2 things:

    Air conditioning
    Job opportunity

    Plus, Chicago got killed with over-unionization. Pretty much that's where the mob went after prohibition.
     
  14. T-Slack

    T-Slack Member

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    That line by the writer was a kick in the gut. But anyways IMO we would be # 1 if we could count all those people living here illegally.
     
  15. Roxs-Redemption

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    Im going to Houston when I grow older :grin:
     
  16. Fatty FatBastard

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    Let's also look at NYC and LA over the same time frame:

    Year New York Los Angeles
    1850 515,500 n/a
    1860 813,000 n/a
    1870 942,000 n/a
    1880 1,206,000 n/a
    1890 1,515,000 50,300
    1900 3,437,000 102,400
    1910 4,766,000 319,000
    1920 5,620,000 577,000
    1930 6,930,000 1,238,000
    1940 7,454,000 1,504,000
    1950 7,891,000 1,970,000
    1960 7,781,000 2,479,000
    1970 7,894,000 2,816,000
    1980 7,071,000 2,966,000
    1990 7,322,000 3,485,000
    2000 8,008,000 3,694,000
    2010 8,391,000 4,018,000 (both est. so prob. wrong.)
     
  17. 00rocketgirl

    00rocketgirl Contributing Member

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    I would say it is the movement of people from inland to coastal areas. I find it even surprising that Chicago got as big as it did to begin with not being near an ocean.

    I took an oceanography class and we briefly discussed this movement when covering the coasts. If you want to learn more about it this was a great site http://oceanservice.noaa.gov/websites/retiredsites/sotc_pdf/POP.PDF

     
  18. Fatty FatBastard

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    It had much more to do with water access than ocean access. It is one of the main reasons a lot of our States are shaped the way they are. They all needed access to a major water source.
     
  19. MadMax

    MadMax Contributing Member

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    It was a railroad hub. A center of commerce.

    Cubs suck.
     
  20. DonnyMost

    DonnyMost not wrong
    Supporting Member

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    We should measure cities by population density per square mile, and not overall population, because the giant amorphous blob that is Houston is so not a "big" city as much as it is a "voluminous" city. We are cheatin' our way up the ladder. Give us ur territoriez, om nom nom.
     

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