April 22, 2019

Worcester County population growing at same rate as state, nation

Photo | Grant Welker
Worcester County's population grew by an estimated 4,910 from 2017 to 2018, according to new Census figures. The Central Building on Main Street in Worcester is being converted into 55 housing units.

Worcester County's population grew by 4,910 people in 2018, according to the newest annual U.S. Census estimates, keeping pace with statewide and national growth.

The county, Massachusetts and the nation as a whole grew by 0.6%. Massachusetts was carried in large part by growth in and closer to Boston, and the United States grew most in the South and West, in areas like greater Dallas and Phoenix.

The latest county-by-county population estimates show Worcester County population growing at a slightly faster rates in each of the past two years than the previous two. The most recent data for year-to-year growth in 2018 had the county adding more than 4,000 people. The county has added an estimated 32,287 people since the 2010 Census.

Worcester County's population in 2018 was 830,839, according to the Census.

Suffolk County, which includes Boston, and Middlesex County, by far the state's most populous, added the most people.

Suffolk County grew by 5,797 people in 2018 while Middlesex County, which includes Central Massachusetts communities Framingham, Marlborough and Hopkinton, among others, added 9,720 people. Middlesex County has added an estimated 111,629 since the 2010 Census.

Norfolk County, which includes Bellingham, Franklin and towns to the east, grew by 0.6%, adding an estimated 4,071. The county has added an estimated 34,528 since 2010.

The longer-term figures since 2010, when data is more precise during the decennial Census, show much faster paced growth for Boston and its immediate suburbs. Suffolk County has added 85,229 since 2010, for nearly 12% growth. Suffolk and Middlesex County, which includes Cambridge, Somerville and other northern and western suburbs, have accounted for 56% of the state's growth during that time.

Much slower growth has taken place in other Massachusetts counties farther from Boston. Barnstable County, which includes Cape Cod, and Berkshire and Franklin counties, in the western part of the state, have had slight population drops since 2010.

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