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Queens population on the rise: Census

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The number of people living in Queens is growing, although not as fast as in Brooklyn or Manhattan, according to new U.S. census data released this month.

The borough’s population grew by 42,000 people, or nearly 2 percent, since 2010, mirroring a general upward population trend in the city. The borough’s population was about 2,273,000 in 2012, compared to about 2,231,000 in 2010.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the city’s population has reached a record high, spurred by an increase in the number of people moving into the city and a decline in the people moving out, as well as a higher life expectancy.

He said the influx of people moving to the city reflected its good quality of life.

“We have many indicators of quality of life in the city — record low crime, record high tourism, record high life expectancy, record high graduation rates, record job growth and more,” he said. “But there’s no better indication of the strength of our city than a record-high population and a net population influx. People are voting with their feet.”

The Department of City Planning said, however, although a population increase has definitely occurred over the last two years, it may be overstated. It said the populations in Queens and Brooklyn were likely undercounted in the 2010 census due to some housing units being misclassified as vacant.

It also said, although the city has experienced a significant jump in population over the last two years compared to the decade between 2000 and 2010, it is unlikely to continue to grow at that high rate because there is not enough housing to accommodate a larger population.

Regardless, Queens has seen a spike in annual average population growth in the last two years compared to the first decade of the century, with a current rate of about 18,700 additional people living in the borough per year. Only a few hundred additional people on average were added to the borough’s population annually between 2010 and 2000, according to the Department of City Planning.

About 35,600 of the 42,000 additional people living in Queens between 2012 and 2010 are attributed to a natural increase in population, or more births than deaths, whereas 6,514 additional residents are attributed to more people moving to the borough than moving out, putting Queens only second to Manhattan in terms of this type of population growth.

Reach reporter Karen Frantz by e-mail at kfrantz@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4538.

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