ST. LOUIS — The population of the St. Louis metropolitan area declined slightly from the 2020 Census to last year, with the city of St. Louis dropping below 300,000 and Metro East counties losing residents, according to U.S. Census Bureau data released Thursday. St. Louis County, the region's largest, also lost nearly 7,000 residents.
The metro area decline was 0.4%, from 2,820,253 in 2020 to the bureau’s estimate of 2,809,299 last year, a decrease of nearly 11,000 residents.
Jason Hall, CEO of Greater St. Louis, Inc. said in a written statement: “These numbers tell us what we expected and underscore the urgency of focusing this metro on growth and more opportunities for all. Stagnation is the existential threat to everything we love about the place we call home.”
By percentage, the largest population decline was 2.7% in St. Louis city, and the Metro East counties of Calhoun with 1.5% and Macoupin at 1.2% in Macoupin County.
A spokesman for St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones didn’t return a message seeking comment.
Nationwide, more than 73% of counties -- a total of 2,297 – experienced a “natural decrease” in population in 2021, an increase from 45.5% in 2019 and 55.5% in 2020. Natural decrease occurs when there are more deaths than births in a population over a time period.
Of 15 jurisdictions in the St. Louis metro area, 12 recorded natural decreases from 2020 to 2021. The exceptions were St. Charles County, with 232 more births than deaths, Lincoln County with 160 and St. Louis City with 65.
Click here for the full story from the St. Louis Business Journal.