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Demographics of Atlanta

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Map of race and ethnicity in Atlanta  white  black  Hispanic (of any race)  Asian
Map of race and ethnicity in Atlanta
  Hispanic (of any race)

Atlanta is the largest city in the state of Georgia. Atlanta ranks as the 38th-largest in the United States, and the sixth-largest city in the southeastern region. 2010 census results varied dramatically with previous Census Bureau estimates, counting 550,003 residents.[1][2] Atlanta is the core city of the ninth most populous United States metropolitan area at 5,268,860 (est. 2010),[3] with a combined statistical area of 5,626,400.[4]

YouTube Encyclopedic

  • 1/5
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    5 106 192
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  • ✪ Florida and Georgia Compared
  • ✪ The Atlantic slave trade: What too few textbooks told you - Anthony Hazard
  • ✪ Atlanta Multifamily Market 2018
  • ✪ The Changing Face of America: Demographic Shifts and Their Impacts
  • ✪ U.S. Population Trends - February 2017


Georgia and Florida Two bordering southern states in these United States. Two of the fastest growing states in the country right now. Both are similar in size. Florida is just slightly bigger. Both are two of the most ethnically diverse states in the country. 25.6% of those living in Florida identify as either Hispanic or Latino. 32.2% of those living in Georgia identify as African American. The largest cities in both are about the same size. Atlanta, in Georgia has a metropolitan population of about 5.9 million, and Miami, Florida, has a metro population of about 6.2 million. According to Forbes magazine, both have promising economic futures. The unemployment rate in both states is about the same. Top industries in Florida include tourism, agriculture, and international trade. Top industries in Georgia include agriculture as well, energy, and film. Huh? Yep, they film a lot more TV shows and movies in Georgia due to tax incentives. In fact, the only two states in the country that produce more big budget movies and TV shows is California and New York. Georgia will give 20% tax credits for big budget films...30% if the show or film shows its logo at the end of the credits. Both have similar percentages of citizens who got at least a bachelor’s degree or higher. Both are two of the oldest states in the country. However, Florida was settled by Europeans long before Georgia was. Most of the American Indian nations who resided historically in Florida and Georgia were wiped out due to disease brought over by the Spanish. Speaking of the Spanish, they had much more of a presence in Florida, controlling it off and on until 1819, after the United States basically just said, yeah it’s ours now. In 1565, the Spanish established St. Augustine in Florida, which today still exists and is the oldest city in the United States. In the 1700s, different American Indian tribes, notably the Muscogee, aka Creeks, moved into Florida. Over the years a new nation formed of these groups called the Seminole. The Seminole were well known for their resistance to American encroachment on their lands. The most notable American Indian nation in Georgia was the Cherokee, who lived fairly peacefully with Georgians until several of them wanted their land. Yeah, just like the Seminole, most of the Cherokee were eventually kicked out of Georgia, many sent via the infamous Trail of Tears. But about 100 years before that, Georgia was one of the original 13 British colonies and a place where American Indian land was actually respected. Founded by General James Oglethorpe in 1732, he wanted Georgia to be a place where English citizens who were imprisoned for debt, as well as “the worthy poor,” could start over. He was pretty strict with his rules in those early years, banning alcohol and even banning slavery. Yeah but that slavery ban was eventually lifted. By the time Georgia and Florida became states, they had plenty of slavery. Both states would eventually leave the United States and join the Confederate States of America, fighting to keep the institution of slavery in the American Civil War. After the the Confederates lost the Civil War, both states were readmitted into the Union in 1868. Their economies both struggled after the war. After the Reconstruction period, Jim Crow laws enforcing racial segregation went into effect in both states. Later, though, it would be Georgia where the Civil Rights Movement really took off. During the later half of the 1800s and first half of the 1900s, it was mostly Georgia that grew in population. However, that all changed with the invention of the air conditioner. After the air conditioner, people could go inside and escape the heat and humidity! In 1950, Florida had less people than Georgia. By 1990, it had more than double the amount of people as Georgia. In recent decades, both Georgia and Florida have become more diverse, but politically Georgia still remains more conservative than Florida. The last Democratic President Georgia elected was the fellow Southerner Bill Clinton in 1992, and before that Jimmy Carter, who used to be Governor of Georgia. Florida, meanwhile, is what we call a swing state, meaning people’s votes go back and forth between the two major political parties and their votes actually count in presidential elections. Woah! Republican Donald Trump edged out Democrat Hillary Clinton there in 2016. Democrat Barack Obama won the previous two elections, and Republican George W. Bush won the two elections before that. Bush won Florida by just a few hundred votes in 2000, which literally was the reason why he won that race that year. Oh yeah, check out my many videos about that election. While researching this video, I was bit surprised on all the differences between the two states. There are a lot. Florida is less religious than Georgia. Of those who identify as religious in both states, Christianity of course is the dominant religion, with the largest sect in Georgia Baptist and Catholic in Florida. Florida has more foreign born residents. About 1 out of every 5 residents is an immigrant. Most of these immigrants are from nearby Cuba. Yeah, Florida has, by far, the most Cuban Americans in the country. Many Cubans first came to Florida after Fidel Castro took over in 1959. More than 27% of Florida residents speak a language other than English. Mildly fun fact. Miami is closer to Havana, Cuba than it is to Tampa. For being so close to each other, the geography of both states is pretty different. For starters, Florida just sticks right out there and is mostly surrounded by water. It’s what you call a peninsula. There is the Atlantic Ocean to the east, the Gulf of Mexico to the west, and the Straits of Florida to the south. As I referenced earlier, Florida is pretty close to Cuba, but it’s also freaking close to the Bahamas. As such, Florida has some of the busiest cruise ports in the world. Well PortMiami is the largest passenger port in the world. But leaving and arriving to Florida? More like going to Florida. With its beaches and attractions like Disney World, tens of millions of tourists go on vacation to Florida each year. Georgia is just not known for tourism like Florida is. Florida is swampier than Georgia. It’s also generally much flatter, and while there are some hills in the central and northern parts of the state, Florida is barely above sea level when it’s not actually at sea level. Um, yeah, that last part. Miami and other parts of the state are some of the most vulnerable in the world when it comes to rising sea levels due to climate change. Speaking of climate change, Florida has many more hurricanes than Georgia. Usually, by the time hurricanes end up getting to Georgia, they have turned into tropical storms, which still can be pretty brutal. The Sunshine state? Yeah, right. Florida may have that nickname, but it gets lots of rain, more than any other state as matter of fact. It also gets more lightning than any other state. While it’s pretty darn warm and muggy much of the year, it’s pretty darn nice in the winter. Georgia, being further north, of course gets a little cooler than Florida, but its higher elevations also accelerate that. In the northwestern part of the state, it has freaking mountains, part of the Ridge-and-Valley Appalachians. Ok I know, the locals pronounce it AppaLATCHuh. The hilly Piedmont Plateau region stretches across central Georgia. While Florida has a straight up tropical climate at its southern edge, most of it is classified as humid subtropical and warm oceanic climate. Georgia is also generally humid subtropical, but of course the mountains and Atlantic Ocean like to shake things up a bit. Florida is in two time zones, Georgia just one. So take that, Georgia. Woah sorry, Georgia. I don’t know where that came from. (Atlanta clip) How's your parents? Good, good. They're driving to Florida right now to visit my uncle who's dying. Oh, Florida, huh? Make sure you tell 'em to watch out for Florida Man. What's Florida Man? It seems that Florida is notorious for weird stories coming out of the state. You know, like the story about that dude from Gainesville who got mad at his girlfriend an grabbed an alligator out of his bathtub to swing around at her as a weapon? Speaking of alligators, Florida has a lot more than Georgia. Or the story of the lady who thought she was a mermaid and got in trouble for wearing her mermaid costume in a community pool because it violated a “no fins” policy? So why do all these stories come out of Florida? Are Florida residents just weirder? Is it because Florida just has a lot of people so the odds are greater? Well, it’s more likely that we just HEAR about the crazy stuff more because Florida law lets the media have basically unlimited access to police reports in the state. Florida appears to have more crime than Georgia. Florida is more expensive than Georgia, mostly due to housing. Georgia has a higher poverty rate than Florida, despite having a higher GDP per capita than Florida. Georgia spends more money per student on education, although both states are below the national average in that category. Florida is known as the number one place for retirees to um, retire to. When you go there...there’s just old people everywhere, dude. So yeah, Georgia is a lot younger than Florida. Most of the rest of the country is, too, but surprisingly Florida isn’t the state with the oldest population. Florida has less taxes overall than Georgia. However, Florida has more boy bands who originated there. Georgia has more rappers. Well, decent ones at least. Ok, once I realized that I was looking up how many boy bands came out of both states, I knew it was about time to wrap this up. Despite a heated college football rivalry between Bulldogs and Gators, these two states don’t seem to hate each other that much. Maybe that’s because they ain’t got to. They both have bright futures, well unless we don’t get that whole climate change thing figured out. (Ace Ventura clip) Oh...there is just one more thing, lieutenant. If you live in Florida. Watch out for those pythons. This video was suggested by my Patreon supporter TheNobleYoshi. Thanks for the great suggestion! So, what do you think? Oranges or peaches? Which state do YOU like better? What else should I have included in this video? What did I get right? What did I get wrong? Which two states should I compare next? Ok that’s a lot of questions. I’m sorry about that. Thanks for watching!


City of Atlanta


Atlanta's population grew steadily during the first 100 years of the city's existence, and peaked in 1970 at around 496,000. However, from 1970 to 2000, the city lost over 100,000 residents, a decrease of around 16 percent. During the same time, the metro area gained over three million people, cutting the city's share of the metro population in half, from over 25 percent in 1970 to around 12 percent in 2000.[5] However, the city's population bottomed out in 1990 at around 394,000, and it has been increasing every year since then, reaching 420,003 residents in 2010.

Racial composition 2010[6] 1990[7] 1970[7] 1940[7]
White 38.4% 31.0% 48.4% 65.4%
—Non-Hispanic 36.3% 30.3% 47.3%[8] n/a
Black or African American 54.0% 67.1% 51.3% 34.6%
Hispanic or Latino (of any race) 5.2% 1.9% 1.5%[8] n/a

2010 Census

Historical populations
Census City[9] Region[10]
1850 2,572 N/A
1860 9,554 N/A
1870 21,789 N/A
1880 37,409 N/A
1890 65,533 N/A
1900 89,872 419,375
1910 154,839 522,442
1920 200,616 622,283
1930 270,366 715,391
1940 302,288 820,579
1950 331,314 997,666
1960 487,455 1,312,474
1970 496,973 1,763,626
1980 425,022 2,233,324
1990 394,017 2,959,950
2000 416,474 4,112,198
2010 420,003 5,729,304
Region: Combined Statistical Area (CSA)


In 2009, the median income for a household in the city was $47,464 and the median income for a family was $59,711. About 21.8% of the population and 17.2% of families lived below the poverty line.[13]

Race and ethnicity

The 2010 and 2000 composition of Atlanta by race, ethnicity and foreign-born status was:[14][15][16][17]

Race, ethnicity, or
foreign-born status
Pop. 2010 % of total 2010 Pop. 2000 % of total 2000 absolute
change 2000-2010
% change 2000-2010
Black 286,126 54.0% 249,829 57.4% 36,297 14.5%
White 211,365 38.4% 138,352 33.2% 22,763 16.5%
White non-Hispanic 183,294 33.3% 135,322 31.3% 22,155 16.8%
Asian and Pacific Islander 28,071 5.1% 16,873 3.9% 11,198 65.8%
Hispanic or Latino of any race 56,142 10.2% 32,643 7.5% 23,499 72.0%
Foreign-born 33,621[18] 8.0%[19] 27,352 6.6% 6,269 22.9%

Atlanta is, as of 2010, the nation's 4th largest black-majority city and has long been known as a "black mecca" for its role as a center of black wealth, political and social power, education, and culture including film and music.[20]

The city of Atlanta is seeing a large demographic increase in its white population, and at a pace that outstrips the rest of the nation. The proportion of whites in the city's population grew faster between 2000 and 2006 than that of any other U.S. city.[21] By 2010, Atlanta's white population had increased by 22,763 people. The white percentage increased from 31% in 2000, to 35% in 2006, to 38% in 2010, more than double the increase between 1990 and 2000. During the same time, the city's black population increased by 31,678 people, shrinking from 61.4% of the city's population in 2000 to 54.0% in 2010. The demographic changes are due to an influx of whites into gentrifying intown neighborhoods, such as East Atlanta and the Old Fourth Ward, coupled with a movement of blacks into adjacent suburbs, such as Clayton County.[22][23][24][24] Note that this phenomenon is not unique to Atlanta, as Washington, D.C. is undergoing a similar demographic change.

The city of Atlanta has recently become relatively more diverse. The city long consisted overwhelmingly of blacks and non-Hispanic whites; those groups made up 92.1% of the city in 1990, but by 2010 their proportion had shrunk to 85.0%. Atlanta's Hispanic population increased by 72.0% from 2000 to 2010, and in 2010 the city was 10.2% Hispanic. The Asian American population increased by 65.5%, and in 2010 Asian Americans made up 5.1% of the city.

The trend towards ethnic diversity is much stronger in Metro Atlanta as a whole in which blacks and non-Hispanic whites make up only 83.1% of the population. The metro area's Hispanic population more than doubled from 268,851 in 2000 to 547,400 in 2010, and now makes up over 10% of the region's population.[25] These immigrant communities have altered the economic, cultural, and religious landscape of metro Atlanta.[26] The Asian American population in the metro nearly doubled and makes up just under 5% of the region's population. Gwinnett County became one of the most diverse counties in the nation.[27]

Race and ethnicity by neighborhood

2010 census figures for Atlanta's 25 neighborhood planning units reveal several key facts about Atlanta's neighborhoods:

  • 60% of the city's area consists of overwhelmingly black neighborhoods: together, Northwest, Southwest, and Southeast Atlanta are 92% black
  • there are some areas that are predominantly white, notably Buckhead and Northeast Atlanta (NPUs F and N) which are on average 80% white
  • most of the fastest growing areas are central: Downtown (25.9%), Midtown, West Midtown, close-in east side neighborhoods (NPU N) (18.4%)
  • the Ben Hill area at the southwest Perimeter is also growing quickly (up 5,452 people, 45.8%)
  • population loss in areas of Northwest Atlanta (avg. -24.1%) and Southeast Atlanta (-20.5%), as well as some parts of Southwest Atlanta


NPU Major neighborhoods 2010 pop. 2000 pop. Growth % White Black Asian All other Hispanic Source
M Downtown, Old Fourth Ward, Sweet Auburn, Castleberry Hill 26,886 21,359 25.9% 34.1% 56.1% 4.9% 4.9% 4.8% [29]
E Midtown, Georgia Tech, Atlantic Station, Loring Heights, Brookwood Hills 42,121 34,461 22.2% 65.4% 17.4% 12.6% 4.6% 4.9% [30]
A Paces, Margaret Mitchell, Mt. Paran/Northside, Chastain Park 11,687 11,300 3.4% 91.7% 3.2% 3.5% 1.7% 2.3% [31]
B Buckhead Village, North Buckhead, Lindbergh, Pine Hills, Peachtree Heights, Garden Hills 47,292 38,645 22.4% 75.5% 12.3% 5.3% 6.8% 9.5% [32]
C Collier Hills, Peachtree Battle, Arden/Habersham, SW Buckhead (W of Northside, S of Wesley) 18,122 16,199 11.9% 83.5% 8.4% 3.2% 4.9% 6.0% [33]
G West Highlands, Carey Park 8,381 11,632 -27.9% 3.3% 94.2% 0.5% 2.1% 1.9% [34]
J Grove Park, Center Hill 12,533 17,085 -26.6% 1.9% 96.4% 0.1% 1.7% 1.3% [35]
K Bankhead, Washington Park, Mozley Park, Hunter Hills 9,399 11,997 -21.7% 9.1% 88.5% 0.4% 2.0% 1.9% [36]
L English Avenue, Vine City, (The Bluff) 6,148 7,316 -16.0% 6.1% 89.1% 1.0% 3.8% 2.8% [37]
Border Buckhead/West Midtown/Northwest
D Whittier Mill Village, Riverside, Bolton, Underwood Hills, Huff Rd in W Midtown, Berkeley Park 10,690 8,690 23.0% 59.2% 23.9% 4.5% 12.4% 15.7% [38]
Northeast / East
F Virginia-Highland, Morningside/Lenox Park 23,641 20,890 13.2% 79.6% 10.0% 3.3% 7.2% 9.7% [39]
N Inman Park, Candler Park, Poncey-Highland, Reynoldstown, Cabbagetown, Lake Claire 17,389 14,688 18.4% 79.9% 13.2% 2.7% 4.2% 4.2% [40]
O Edgewood, Kirkwood, East Lake 13,886 14,724 -5.7% 36.9% 58.7% 1.4% 3.0% 2.5% [41]
W Grant Park, East Atlanta, Ormewood Park, Benteen Park 19,233 20,054 -4.1% 54.8% 38.0% 1.7% 5.5% 6.5% [42]
H Adamsville, areas S of I-20, W of I-285, N of Cascade Rd 14,049 17,274 -18.7% 2.1% 92.3% 0.2% 5.4% 6.2% [43]
I Collier Heights, Peyton Forest, Cascade Heights 20,741 21,500 -3.5% 2.2% 94.1% 0.1% 3.6% 4.2% [44]
P Ben Hill, (SW Atlanta W of I-285) 17,363 11,911 45.8% 1.9% 95.0% 0.6% 2.5% 1.9% [45]
Q Midwest Cascade, Regency Trace 1,770 1,024 72.9% 1.5% 96.5% 1.0% 1.0% 0.6% [46]
R Adams Park, Campbellton Road, Greenbriar 16,452 16,679 -1.4% 1.4% 96.8% 0.1% 1.6% 1.4% [47]
S Oakland City, Venetian Hills, Cascade Avenue/Road, Fort McPherson 10,204 12,396 -17.7% 4.0% 93.8% 0.2% 2.0% 1.2% [48]
T West End, Westview, Atlanta University Center, Ashview Heights 16,280 20,095 -19.0% 2.3% 94.5% 0.4% 2.9% 2.3% [49]
V Capitol Gateway, Summerhill, Peoplestown, Mechanicsville, Pittsburgh, Adair Park 14,198 15,825 -10.3% 6.3% 89.3% 1.3% 3.1% 2.5% [50]
X Metropolitan Parkway (Atlanta) corridor: Capitol View, Sylvan Hills, Perkerson 12,398 14,999 -17.3% 10.5% 83.2% 0.7% 5.6% 5.8% [51]
Y South Atlanta, Lakewood Heights, Chosewood Park 11,111 12,472 -10.9% 14.3% 80.6% 0.4% 4.7% 9.2% [52]
Z Thomasville Heights, Glenrose Park, Southern Jonesboro Rd Corridor 18,050 24,210 -25.4% 3.1% 92.8% 0.4% 3.7% 4.2% [53]
Major shifts from 2000 to 2010

Rise in white population:

  • In NPU W (East Atlanta, Grant Park, Ormewood Park, Benteen Park), the black population went from 57.6% to 38.0%, and the white proportion rose from 36.5% to 54.8%
  • In NPU O (Edgewood, Kirkwood, East Lake area), the black population went from 86.2% to 58.7%, and the white proportion rose from 11.3% to 36.9%.
  • In NPU L (English Avenue, Vine City), the black proportion of the population went down from 97.5% to 89.1%, while the white proportion rose from 1.3% to 6.1%. Note that there many infill residential units were added in the King Plow Arts Center area, which falls under English Avenue but which in character is an extension of the Marietta Street Artery and West Midtown.
  • In NPU D, stretching from West Midtown along the border of Buckhead and northwestern Atlanta, westward towards the river, the white proportion rose from 49.3% to 59.2% with the black proportion dropping from 36.5% to 23.9%

Increasing black population:

  • In NPU X (Metropolitan Parkway corridor), the black proportion of the population rose from 59.5% to 83.2%, while the White, Asian and Hispanic proportion dropped about three percentage points each.
  • NPU B (central Buckhead) became more diverse, with the white proportion dropping from 82.8% to 75.5%, the black proportion rising from 5.9% to 12.3%, and the Asian proportion from 3.1% to 5.3%

Foreign-born and born out-of-state

In the city of Atlanta, ca. 53% of residents were born in Georgia, 19.1% elsewhere in the South, 18.6% outside the South and 8.0% in an foreign country. Although the foreign-born population in the city itself is low among large US cities and even compared to Atlanta's own metro area, it is high compared to other nearby Southern cities. For example, in Macon, Georgia, 7.1% were US-born outside the South and 3.0% foreign-born.and in Birmingham, Alabama only 7.7% were US-born outside the South and 3.2% foreign-born.[54]

Sexual orientation and marital status

The city of Atlanta also has one of the highest LGBT populations per capita. It ranks third of all major cities, behind San Francisco and slightly behind Seattle, with 12.8% of the city's total population recognizing themselves as gay, lesbian, or bisexual.[55][56] According to the 2000 United States Census (revised in 2004), Atlanta has the twelfth highest proportion of single-person households nationwide among cities of 100,000 or more residents, which was at 38.5%.[57]

Daytime population

According to a 2000 daytime population estimate by the Census Bureau,[58] over 250,000 more people commuted to Atlanta on any given workday, boosting the city's estimated daytime population to 676,431. This is an increase of 62.4% over Atlanta's resident population, making it the largest gain in daytime population in the country among cities with fewer than 500,000 residents.


1850 - 2,572

  • City limits a circle with radius of 1 mile (3.14 mi2)

1860 - 9,554

  • 1866 city limits enlarged to a radius of 1.5 miles (7 mi2) [59]

1870 - 21,789

1880 - 37,409

  • had eclipsed Savannah to become Georgia's largest city
  • 1889 city limits enlarged to a radius of 1.75 miles, Inman Park also annexed.[60] (9.6 mi2)

1890 - 65,533

  • 1894 annexation of West End (adding 1.0 mi2 for a total of 11 mi2)[61]

1900 - 89,872, including 2500 persons of foreign birth and 35,900 of African descent.

1910 - 154,839 (metro 522,442)

1920 - 200,616 (metro 622,283)

1930 - 270,688 (metro 715,391)

1940 - 302,288 (metro 820,579)

1950 - 331,314 (metro 997,666)

1960 - 487,455 (metro 1,312,474)

1970 - 496,973 (metro 1,763,626)

1980 - 425,022 (metro 2,233,324)

1990 - 394,017 (metro 2,959,950)

2000 - 416,474 (metro 4,112,198)

2010 - 420,003 (metro 5,268,860)

Political implications

Atlanta's changing demographics have had effects on its political system. In the 2009 mayoral race, Mary Norwood lost by just 714 votes (out of over 84,000 cast) to Kasim Reed. Norwood, who is white, would have become the city's first non-black mayor since 1974. This comes amid the fact that in recent years, an influx of whites, Asians and Hispanics into Atlanta has shifted the demographics in what was once a city guaranteed to elect a black mayor. In fact, the percentage of blacks dropped to 54 percent in 2010 from 61 percent in 2000. This demographic change and its possible historic effect on Atlanta's city government was a factor that, among others, helped draw supporters of both candidates to the polls.[66]


Atlanta is projected to have a population of around 590,000 people by 2030. However, this projection assumes Atlanta garners only seven percent of the metro's growth during that period. If the city were to capture ten percent of metro Atlanta's growth, it would reach a population of 660,000 people by 2030.[5]

Metro Atlanta

Race, ethnicity, or
foreign-born status
Pop. 2010 % of total 2010 Pop. 2000[A] % of total 2000 absolute
change 2000-2010[B]
% change 2000-2010[B]
Total 5,268,860 4,112,198
White only 2,920,480 55.4% 2,589,888 63.0% 330,592 12.8%
    Non-Hispanic white only 2,671,757 50.7% 2,447,856 59.5% 223,901 9.1%
Black only 1,707,913 32.4% 1,189,179 28.9% 518,734 43.6%
Asian only and Pacific Islander only   356,956 4.9% 137,640 3.3% 119,316 86.7%
    Asian Indian 178,980 1.5% 37,162 0.9% 41,818 112.5%
    Korean 93,870 0.8% 22,317 0.5% 21,553 96.6%
    Chinese 67,660 0.7% 22,564 0.5% 15,096 66.9%
    Vietnamese 56,554 0.7% 23,996 0.6% 12,558 52.3%
Hispanic or Latino of any race 547,400 10.4% 268,851 6.5% 278,549 103.6%
    Mexican 314,351 6.0% 165,109 4.0% 149,242 90.4%
    Puerto Rican 93,337 0.8% 19,358 0.5% 23,979 123.9%
    Cuban 47,648 0.3% 9,206 0.2% 8,442 91.7%
    Colombian 42,500 0.3% 8,500 0.1% 33,000 91.7%
Foreign-born 716,434 13.6% 424,519 10.3% 291,915 68.8%

A Atlanta MSA in 2000 did not include Butts, Dawson, Haralson, Heard, Jasper, Lamar, Meriwether, and Pike counties, whose population totalled in 2000: 135,783; in 2010: 156,368 (2.96% of total new 28-county metro)[67]
B Compares the larger 28-county Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta MSA 2010 with a smaller 20-county Atlanta MSA 2000; however the 8 new counties represent less than 3% of the larger 28-county metro.
Source: for race and Hispanic population, U.S. Census Bureau 2010 and 2000 census; for foreign-born population: US Census Bureau 2010 and 2000 American Community Surveys; Immigrants in 2010 Metropolitan America, Brookings Institution

Race and ethnicity

The 2010 census counted 5,268,860 people in the 28-county metro area. This was an increase of 1,020,879 versus the same 28-county area in 2000, second only to Houston. The percent increase was 24.0%, second-highest (after Houston) among the nation's ten largest metro areas.

White Americans made up 55.4% of metro Atlanta's population, a relative decrease from 63.0% ten years earlier, but still an absolute increase of over 330,000 people. Non-Hispanic whites dropped from 59.5% to 50.7% of the metro's population, increasing by about 224,000 people.

Black Americans are the largest racial minority with 32.4% of the population, up from 28.9% in 2000. The city of Atlanta has long been regarded as a "black mecca" for its role as a center of black education, political power, wealth, and culture. From 2000-2010, the geographic disbursement of blacks in Metro Atlanta changed radically. Long concentrated in the city of Atlanta and DeKalb County, the black population there dropped while over half a million African Americans settled across other parts of the metro area, including approximately 112,000 in Gwinnett County, 71,000 in Fulton outside Atlanta, 58,000 in Cobb, 50,000 in Clayton, 34,000 in Douglas, and 27,000 each in Newton and Rockdale Counties.[68]

Year Black pop. in
City of Atlanta
Black pop. in
DeKalb County
Total black pop.
Atlanta + DeKalb
Total black pop.
Metro Atlanta
Proportion of black pop.
in Atlanta + DeKalb
2000 255,689 361,111 616,800 1,189,179 51.9%
2010 226,894 375,697 602,591 1,707,913 35.2%

Hispanic Americans are the fastest growing ethnic group. At 10.4% of the metro's population in 2010, versus only 6.5% in 2000, the metro's Hispanic population increased an astounding 103.6%, or 278,459 people, in ten years. Major Hispanic groups include 314,351 Mexicans, 43,337 Puerto Ricans and 17,648 Cubans. All of those groups' populations increased by over 90% in the ten-year period. Of the metro's 279,000-person increase in the Hispanic population from 2000 to 2010, 98,000 came in Gwinnett County, 37,000 in Cobb, 25,000 in Fulton (all but 3,000 outside the city of Atlanta), 20,000 in Hall, and 15,000 in DeKalb County.[69] The Hispanic population is heavily concentrated in the northeastern section of the Atlanta metropolitan Area.

The Asian American population also increased rapidly from 2000 to 2010. There were 256,956 Asian Americans in the metro area in 2010, making up 4.9% of the population. This represented an 87% increase over 2000. The largest Asian groups are 78,980 Indians, 43,870 Koreans, 37,660 Chinese and 36,554 Vietnamese.

Atlanta has Georgia's largest Bosnian American population with approximately 10,000 in the metro area, mainly in Gwinnett County and DeKalb County[70]

The most common reported ancestries in Atlanta were English, American, German, Irish, Italian, Scottish, African, French, Polish, Russian and Dutch.[71]

Foreign-born population

Metro Atlanta is increasingly international, with its 716,434 foreign-born residents in 2010, a 69% increase versus 2000. This was the fourth largest rate of growth among the nation's top 100 metros, after Baltimore, Orlando and Las Vegas. The foreign-born proportion of the population went up from 10.3% to 13.6%, and Atlanta moved up from 14th to 12th in ranking of US metro areas with the largest immigrant population by sheer numbers. Still, its 13.6% proportion of immigrants is only the 29th highest of the nation's top 100 metros.[72]

Metro Atlanta's immigrants are more suburban than most other cities'. Out of the top 100 US metros, Atlanta has the 11th highest ratio of the foreign-born living in the suburbs and not in the core city.[72] Atlanta does not have single centers of ethnic groups such as a Koreatown, but rather areas such as the Buford Highway Corridor in DeKalb County and parts of Gwinnett County are commercial centers for multiple ethnic communities.[citation needed]

In 1990 Greater Atlanta had the largest Japanese population in the Southeast United States. The Consulate General of Japan in Atlanta estimated that, during that year, 3,500 to 4,000 Japanese lived in Greater Atlanta. Of the metropolitan areas in the Southeast United States, in 1990 Greater Atlanta had the most extensive education network for Japanese nationals.[73]

8% of the foreign born population in Atlanta is black. Cobb County has the largest Haitian population. Nigerians are concentrated in DeKalb County.

3.2 percent of immigrants in Atlanta were born in Jamaica and are Jamaican.[74]

In the Atlanta-Sandy Springs- Marietta, GA area the African foreign born population came from Nigeria, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, South Africa, Somalia, Cameroon Sierra Leone and Togo.[75]

There is a Eritrean community in Atlanta.[76]


Religion in Atlanta, while historically centered around Protestant Christianity, now involves many faiths as a result of the city and metro area's increasingly international population. While Protestant Christianity still maintains a strong presence in the city (63%),[77][78] in recent decades Catholicism has gained a strong foothold due to migration patterns. Metro Atlanta also has a considerable number of ethnic Christian congregations, including Korean and Indian churches. Large non-Christian faiths are present in the form of Islam, Judaism, and Hinduism. Overall, there are over 1,000 places of worship within Atlanta.[79]


Signs in English, Spanish and Chinese along Buford Highway in Metro Atlanta
Signs in English, Spanish and Chinese along Buford Highway in Metro Atlanta

In 2008, approximately 83.3% of the population five years and older spoke only English at home, which is roughly 4,125,000 people. Over 436,000 people (8.8%) spoke Spanish at home, making Metro Atlanta the 15th highest number of Spanish speakers among American metropolitan areas (MSAs). Over 193,000 people (3.9%) spoke other Indo-European languages at home. People who speak an Asian language at home numbered over 137,000 and made up 2.8% of the population.[80][81]


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External links

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