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Chicago population shrinks, Houston closes in on third place – NBC Chicago

Chicago could soon lose its status as the third-largest city in the United States, according to recently announced census data.

Figures released Thursday by the Census Bureau show the Windy City lost population last year, down 0.3% from the numbers recorded between July 1, 2022 and July 1, 2023.

According to the data, the city increased from a population of 2,672,660 to 2,664,452.

Meanwhile, Houston, Texas, which has been second only to Chicago in population for several years, has continued to grow in size. In the same time frame, the Texas city grew 0.5% to 2,314,157 residents.

Houston has been moving closer to Chicago for years. In 2015, experts predicted that Houston could overtake Chicago as the third largest city by 2025. At that time, estimates suggested that Houston’s population could be between 2.54 million and 2.7 million. residents by 2025, while Chicago would reach around 2.5 million.

Now, a new analysis from the Illinois Policy Institute predicts that Chicago will be overtaken by Houston by 2035 “if demographic trends continue.”

New York and Los Angeles, the No. 1 and No. 2 cities in terms of population size in the United States, also saw population declines.

New York had the highest rate, at 0.9%, while Los Angeles lost just under 2,000 people.

The data collected for 2023, however, does not include much of the influx of migrants arriving in Chicago during the second half of 2023.

According to authorities, Chicago has received more than 41,000 migrants since June 2023.

Illinois also lost population, figures show.

The state, however, has already disputed the census data.

The 2020 census found that Illinois lost just over 18,000 residents in 10 years, or about 0.1% of its population. But Illinois officials said the state actually gained residents between 2010 and 2020.

Officials say more than 700 “group neighborhoods” were missed or undercounted in the 2020 census. It was determined that more than 40,000 people residing in nursing homes or senior living communities were been forgotten, as well as nearly 6,000 residents in dormitories and other university residences.

The residents counted will not be added to this census’ official total of 12,812,508, but officials say the recount will impact how annual projections are calculated, resulting in additional federal funding for the state.

NBC Chicago

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