Recently released population estimates show things are not looking up for Shelby County and the Memphis metro area in terms of growth.
The U.S. Census Bureau estimates–for July 1, 2011–show that more people moved away from the entire eight-county Memphis metro area than moved in during the 15 months since the official 2010 Census was taken on April 1, 2010.
Not surprisingly, more people continued to move out of Shelby County than moved in. That pattern has been going on since sometime in the 1970s.
However, the 2010 Census figures and birth-death statistics showed that during the 2000-2010 decade more people were attracted to the entire metro area than moved away. The net migration number for the decade was an anemic 18,481 compared to the 178,069 in the high growth Nashville metro area.
However, it was a plus rather than minus figure.
The 2011 estimates show the Memphis metro area with a 1,288 net migration loss in the 15 months since the 2000 Census. There was a gain of 2,341 in international migration but this was more than offset by a net loss of 3,629 in domestic (within the United States) migration.
(In comparison, the Nashville metro area had a 14,699 gain from net migration, including gains of 3,886 from international migration and 10,813 from domestic migration.)
Despite more people moving away than moving in, both the Memphis metro area as a whole and Shelby County continued to grow in population as a result of births exceeding deaths. The last 10-year census to show more people moving to Shelby County than moving away was the 1970 Census.
On July 1, 2011, Shelby County’s population was up 7,444 compared to the 2010 Census count and the metro area was up 9,505, the Census Bureau estimates reflect.
The estimates put Shelby County’s population at 935,088 and the Memphis metro area’s population at 1,325,605.
In developing its annual estimates, the Census Bureau uses births, deaths, administrative records and survey data.