Atlanta is attracting an increasing number of middle class African and Hispanic Americans (Photo: Ryan Park)

About us

US sanctuary cities
US migration
American domestic migration
Integration of immigrants
USA racial profiling
Voting rights in the USA
Vision for metro America
Cities and immigration
Poverty in US cities
US poverty 2011
US urban inequality
US prison closures - Cities
US clergy and local politics
US metro 2010
Arizona's controversial immigration law
US socio-economic trends
USA: Livable communities
English-only US cities
2009 homelessnees in US cities
US mayors silent on racial profiling
Obamas' urban policies
Security cameras in US cities
US election 08: Urban issues
Failed US immigration reform
Minorities in the US
Catholic Church in urban USA
US cities and illegal immigrants
US-Mexican border fence
Los Angeles migration
Maras street gangs
US affordable housing crisis
US population reaches 300m
$1.4 billion for US homeless
US poverty underestimated
Nonprofits versus US cities
Black American men
US cities and the Iraq war

City Mayors reports news from towns and cities around the world. Worldwide | Elections | North America | Latin America | Europe | Asia | Africa | Events |

Mayors from The Americas, Europe. Asia, Australia and Africa are competing for the annual World Mayor Award. More

City Mayors ranks the world’s largest as well as richest cities and urban areas. It also ranks the cities in individual countries, and provides a list of the capital cities of some 200 sovereign countries. More

City Mayors reports political events, analyses the issues and depicts the main players. More

City Mayors describes and explains the structures and workings of local government in Europe, The Americas, Asia, Australia and Africa. More

City Mayors profiles city leaders from around the world and questions them about their achievements, policies and aims. More

City Mayors deals with economic and investment issues affecting towns and cities. More

City Mayors reports on how business developments impact on cities and examines cooperation between cities and the private sector. More

City Mayors describes and explains financial issues affecting local government. More

City Mayors lists and features urban events, conferences and conventions aimed at urban decision makers and those with an interst in cities worldwide. More

City Mayors reports urban environmental developments and examines the challenges faced by cities worldwide. More

City Mayors reports on and discusses urban development issues in developed and developing countries. More

City Mayors reports on developments in urban society and behaviour and reviews relevant research. More

City Mayors deals with urban transport issues in developed and developing countries and features the world’s greatest metro systems. More

City Mayors examines education issues and policies affecting children and adults in urban areas. More

City Mayors investigates health issues affecting urban areas with an emphasis on health in cities in developing countries. More

City Mayors examines the importance of urban tourism to city economies. More

City Mayors examines the contributions history and culture make to urban society and environment. More

City Mayors describes the history, architecture and politics of the greatest city halls in the world. More

City Mayors invites readers to write short stories about people in cities around the world. More

City Mayors questions those who govern the world’s cities and talks to men and women who contribute to urban society and environment. More

City Mayors profiles national and international organisations representing cities as well as those dealing with urban issues. More

City Mayors reports on major national and international sporting events and their impact on cities. More

City Mayors lists cities and city organisations, profiles individual mayors and provides information on hundreds of urban events. More

Hispanic, Black and Asian Americans
are spreading out across the country

By Susan Logue (VoA) based on a study on
US migration by the Brookings Institution

11 March 2006: Although the United States has been described as a "melting pot" for a century, American society has seldom lived up to that image. But a new study issued by the Brookings Institution indicates that not only is the nation becoming more of a melting pot, but that diversity is spreading. Using the most recent data available from the US Census Bureau, demographer William Frey determined that minority groups are settling outside of large metropolitan areas much more than they were at the time of the 2000 Census

Frey says the Hispanic population, "which until very recently was heavily clustered in places like Los Angeles or Miami or Chicago or New York, are now really starting to spread out to other parts of the country."

That migration has shifted the population balance in nearly one third of all U.S. counties, where now, at least five per cent of the residents are Hispanic. "So a lot of suburban counties, a lot of exurban counties, that used to be all white are now getting new Hispanics and in some cases Asians and African Americans," Frey says. "And what this does is give much of America a first taste of what diversity is like."

William Frey says that traditionally minorities have tended to be less mobile than whites, settling in places where they had friends and family who provided support, but now they, too, are more likely to choose where they live based on economics.

"It has to do with lower cost of housing," he says. "It also has to do with the availability of jobs. Many of the jobs they are taking are jobs that require people with low skills, jobs in construction or services in retail. And the jobs are being created by people who moved there before, more middle-class folks."

Hispanics who are looking to fill those jobs are moving to cities like Las Vegas, Nevada; Phoenix, Arizona; and Orlando, Florida.

As for African Americans, they too, are looking for greater economic opportunity. Their grandparents and great-grandparents left rural areas in Mississippi, Alabama and Georgia for jobs in New York and Chicago, but they're returning to the South. And while Blacks have been moving to the south since the 1990s, William Frey says the most recent data indicate that trend has gotten stronger.

"Something like 72 per cent of the nation's growth in the black population is taking place in the South," Frey says. "I think it has something to do with a cultural comfort zone. I think there is this long-term connection that African Americans feel with that region that they don't quite have with the other parts of the country."

The number one destination for African Americans in the South is Atlanta, Georgia, a city with a large black middle class.

Wherever there is economic growth in the country, the minority population is growing as well. It's a different story in much of the Midwest and mountain states, which are still predominantly white. Frey explains that in those areas, the population is aging.

"These tend to be places, the parts of the country, that aren't growing very fast," he says. "In other words, the people who live there are people who were left behind after a lot of other folks have moved to the fast growing sunbelt parts of the country. So they are getting older and whiter and the rest of the country is getting more diverse."

Main findings of the Brookings study by William Frey
Analysis of Census Bureau population estimates detailing the distribution of racial and ethnic groups within and across US metropolitan areas since Census 2000 reveals that:

• Hispanic and Asian populations are spreading out from their traditional metropolitan centers, while the shift of blacks toward the South is accelerating. The Los Angeles and New York metropolitan areas contained 23 percent of the nation's Hispanic population in 2004, down from 30 percent in 1990. Meanwhile, interior California areas such as Riverside and Stockton gained significant numbers of Hispanics and Asians. Fully 56 percent of the nation's blacks now reside in the South, a region that has garnered 72 percent of the increase in that group's population since 2000.

• The fastest growing metro areas for each minority group in 2000–2004 are no longer unique, but closely parallel the fastest growing areas in the nation. National growth centers such as Las Vegas, Atlanta, Orlando, and Phoenix are now prominent centers of minority population growth as well. Still, Hispanics, Asians, and blacks remain more likely to reside in large metropolitan areas than the population as a whole.

• Of the nation's 361 metropolitan areas, 111 registered declines in white population from 2000 to 2004, with the largest absolute losses occurring in New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. Declines were greatest in coastal metropolitan areas and economically stagnant parts of the country. More so than for minority groups, white population growth has dispersed towards smaller-sized areas.

• Minorities contributed the majority of population gains in the nation's fastest-growing metropolitan areas and central metropolitan counties from 2000 to 2004. Minority groups remain the demographic lifeblood of inner counties in older metropolitan areas, but they are increasingly fueling growth in fast-growing outer suburban and "exurban" counties as well.

• A strong multi-minority presence characterizes 18 large "melting pot" metro areas, and 27 large metro areas now have "majority minority" child populations. Because the nation's child population is more racially diverse than its adult population, in nearly one-third of all large metro areas—including Washington, DC, Chicago, Phoenix, and Atlanta—fewer than half of all people under age 15 are white.

Hispanic, Asian, and black populations continue to migrate to, and expand their presence in, new destinations. They are increasingly living in suburbs, in rapidly growing job centers in the South and West, and in more affordable areas adjacent to higher-priced coastal metro areas. The wider dispersal of minority populations signifies the broadening relevance of policies aimed at more diverse, including immigrant, communities.

World Mayor 2023