Census Data
August 12, 2021

Census Data Shows Naperville Remains 4th Largest City in Illinois

The latest data released Thursday, Aug. 12, by the U.S. Census Bureau shows the city of Naperville remains the fourth largest city in Illinois, despite population growth over the past decade. With a count of 149,540, it lags behind Chicago at 2,746,388, Aurora at 180,542, and Joliet at 150,362 and is slightly larger than Rockford at 148,655.

The Census data is usually collected by counting each person who lives in the country. It is gathered based on survey input provided by individuals either in person, by phone or online.

The numbers help inform the way congressional representation is determined, as well as allocate local, state and federal dollars for public services.

Census Challenges

The data illustrates a bit of a rosy picture for Naperville amid the backdrop of the reality that the state is facing. The city’s population grew by 7,687, or about 5%, over the past decade, while the numbers show Illinois’ population declined during the same timeframe. In fact, the Census is reporting that the state recorded a population decrease from 12,830,632 to 12,812,508, or a -1.2% change, over the past decade.

The release of the statistics allows states to begin redistricting efforts. Illinois is expected to lose one congressional seat, in accordance with the Census data.

County-by-County Perspective

The data also indicates that the population in DuPage and Will counties, which both include part of Naperville, grew by 1.7% and 2.8% over the past decade, respectively.

At 932,877, DuPage County remains the second largest county by population in Illinois. Will County ranks as the fourth largest in the state with 696,355 residents. The populations in DuPage and Will counties grew from 916,924 and 677,560 residents in 2010, respectively.

Diversity Gains

Both counties saw increased diversity as well over the past decade. DuPage County had a diversity index of 55.5% in 2020, compared to 47.4% in 2010. Will County’s diversity index now stands at 58.6%, compared to 50.9% in 2010. The diversity index measures the probability that two people chosen at random will be from different race and ethnicity groups. The percentage of white residents in both counties decreased over the past decade, as the Black, Asian, Latino and Hispanic populations saw an increase.

Naperville News 17’s Megann Horstead reports.

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