The U.S. Census Bureau has released 2010 U.S. Census information that places Chapel Hill's 2010 population at 57,233. The community's racial minority population is slowly growing, largely due to an increase in Asian and Hispanic residents.
Over the period between 2000 and 2010 Chapel Hill's population grew at an annual rate of 2.2 percent from 46,019 in 2000. The NC State demographer estimated the 2009 Town population as 56,778.
The 2010 Census for Chapel Hill also counted population by race. Black or African American were 9.5 percent or 5,460 residents, down from 11.4 percent in 2000. Asians were 11.8 percent or 6,775 residents, up from 7.2 percent in 2000. Hispanic or Latino were 3,638 residents or 6.4 percent, up from 3.2 percent. This new data shows that Asians have become Chapel Hill's largest racial minority. Whites comprise 72.8 percent of Chapel Hill's population, compared to 77.9 percent in 2000.
The census is a count of everyone living in the United States and, since 1790, has been conducted every 10 years. The census figures are important for many reasons. Businesses rely on the data, as do schools and governments. An accurate count means that a community will receive its fair share of federal funding, and also affects redistricting of elective districts. More census data will be released throughout the year.
The Town of Chapel Hill Planning Department is developing an update of the Chapel Hill Data Book Demographics and Regional Context chapters incorporating the new census numbers. To review previous data books, available online: www.townofchapelhill.org/index.aspx?page=608. To view U.S. Census Data, visit: 2010.census.gov/2010census/data