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Numbers geeks rejoiced on Thursday when the 2010 census numbers for DC were released, and of course I had to dig right in.
The population of Census Tract 72 in 2010 is given as 2,794, an increase of nearly 1,000 residents from 2000 and which accounts for about 11 percent of the entire Ward 6 population increase. The demographic numbers are striking: Near Southeast is now nearly 60 percent white and 31 percent African American, compared to being nearly 95 percent black 10 years ago. It's also interesting that it found 95 percent of the population to be age 18 or older, compared to only 69 percent in 2000. There's also 1,459 more housing units counted in the neighborhood (and that number has certainly gone up since the census was taken).
Here are the numbers:
(You can see an expanded list with percentage change and some additional numbers here, which also shows that the neighborhood's population counted at 2,089 residents in 1990 and 2,994 in 1980.)
The Capitol Riverfront BID has estimated that the neighborhood population was around 3,300 at the end of 2010.
Even though the population of DC itself climbed by nearly 30,000 in the last 10 years, Near Southeast is now a larger portion of the overall population than it was 10 years ago, skyrocketing to a whopping .46 percent of the city's count.
"Tract 72" covers the area south of the freeway from South Capitol Street to 11th Street, but unless people are living east of 11th on their boats (or in a van down by the river), the boundaries would cover all of the residential areas of Near Southeast.
Of course, what future researchers looking at census numbers will never see is how much more the neighborhood emptied out through 2005 (when only 410 M and the private single-family homes were occupied). My guess would be that the population got down to around 400 during that time, if not lower.
Income-related demographic numbers for 2010 aren't yet released, but it's not hard to assume that those numbers will show an equally dramatic change.
And now that the city's numbers are out, the fun really begins with the need to redraw the ward boundaries, which will then beget a redrawing of the ANC boundaries. ANCs are supposed to have about 2,000 residents per single member district--will Near Southeast cease being covered by a single SMD? Or, for that matter, will all of Near Southeast remain in Ward 6, given the noises Marion Barry is making about the necessary redrawing of Ward 8's boundaries? "I'll defend the riverfront," is the quote from Field Marshall Thomas von Wells. (Hey, we kid because we love.) "Ward 6 should remain the same."
(Note: I wrote a slightly different summary of Near Southeast's census numbers for the Post; the numbers cited in that article use the Post's internal numbers by neighborhood instead of going purely by Tract 72. Not sure exactly where the different boundaries are, but I'll stay with Tract 72 here since it's easier to get access to those numbers publicly for checking and comparison.)
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thedofc says: (3/25/11 6:23 PM)
I would support the neighborhood being moved to ward 8. It seems to me that the populace is more likely to vote against Marion Barry. A post article today quoted him: “I believe in integration, but I don’t believe in the apartheid we have in Ward 8." What kind of segregation is going on in ward 8? Someone with reason ought to be able to defeat him.

Full disclosure: I don't live in the neighborhood, although I would love to.


MJM says: (3/25/11 7:37 PM)
You think 3K people could vote out Marion? :) Even after he dies, if that is possible, his embalmed body would still win in Ward 8


SW says: (3/27/11 4:29 PM)
Why the hell would you want to be part of Ward 8, just to try to get Barry voted out of office? News flash: Ward 6 has been getting more than its fair share of development dollars and a lot of that is courtesy of Tommy Wells. Did you read Colbert Kings's column yesterday? See Wells' name listed in it? Of course not, and it's not a coincidence. I know a lot of you newcomers are all renegade idealistic and stuff, but you have to see the big picture.

Then again, I don't live in Near SE, so if you wanna join Ward 8, have at it.


SW says: (3/27/11 4:32 PM)
King column:

link


Andrew in DC says: (3/28/11 8:18 AM)
@SW - he wouldn't want to BE part of Ward 8 ... as his disclosure states, he doesn't live here. He'd just rather *we* be part of Ward 8. Which is awful self-sacrificial and nice of him...


Mark says: (3/28/11 10:05 AM)
Just speaking for myself (and in the way of full disclosure I DO live in Near SE) - I'm darn happy as a resident of Ward 6 and with Councilmember Tommy Wells. I won't go quietly into any other Ward.


GaryRKarr says: (3/28/11 4:12 PM)
How would one get Census Tract numbers for other areas? It would be interesting to compare these numbers with those in SW, for example.


JD says: (3/28/11 4:20 PM)
Here's a map of the 2000 census tracts (don't know of one for 2010 yet): link Then you can go to the Census web site at link and, if you have a PhD in user interfaces, you can search to find the data by tract (I'd go with the choices under Geography). The Fact Finder web site is a prime example of what happens when you have a ton of data that you know people want, but make no effort to have a quick easy interface for basic stuff.
Note that Southwest is not nicely covered by a single census tract, unfortunately.


GaryRKarr says: (3/30/11 11:56 AM)
I think I need more than a PhD to figure that out.


otavio says: (4/5/11 12:47 AM)
Here's the link to the official 2010 Census Tract Reference Maps. Just click on "District of Columbia", and away you go! The D.C. map is split into two sections. Some of the most densely populated tracts in central D.C. have been split into two tracts since the 2000 Census.

link

Don't have too much fun now!

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