North Texas population tops 8 million — and counting, data shows

Here is an amazing growth milestone for North Texas: the region’s population now exceeds the population of Washington State.

New Data of the North Central Texas Council of Governments indicates that as of January 1, approximately 8,097,170 people lived in the 16-county area. The region includes the 12 counties of the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area, plus four adjacent counties: Erath, Navarro, Palo Pinto, and Somervell.

The council’s tally shows North Texas added 157,570 residents last year, despite the COVID-19 pandemic. By crossing the 8 million mark, North Texas can boast of having more inhabitants than Washington State (approximately 7.8 million).

“Since 1990, the region has nearly doubled its population,” the council says.

According to the data, 21 North Texas cities grew at least 10% last year. Caddo Mills led the way, at 64.7%, followed by Aubrey (34.6%) and Haslet (34.5%).

As for the city that added the most people last year, that title goes to Fort Worth, which grew by 22,710 people. It was followed by Lewisville (19,000, attributed largely to the annexation of Castle Hills) and Dallas (16,870).

By percentage, the biggest population gainers among North Texas counties were Rockwall, 6.2%; Ellis and Johnson, 4.3% each; and Collin, 3.8 percent. Numerically, Collin County added the most people (41,150), followed by Dallas County (30,660) and Tarrant County (26,220).

Only four North Texas cities lost population last year: Highland Park, 0.5%; Aledo and Lake Worth, 0.2% each; and Richland Hills, 0.1 percent.

These new figures demonstrate DFW’s continued appeal to individuals and businesses. This spring, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that DFW had the largest population gain among U.S. metros from July 2020 through July 2021. During that time, DFW welcomed an additional 97,290 residents.

“Demographers predict that DFW will reach 10 million people by the 2030s, overtaking Chicago to become America’s third-largest metropolitan area,” according to Rice University’s Kinder Institute for Urban Research.

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