Chicago gained nearly 10,000 people from July 2011 to July 2012, but was the slowest-growing major city in the country according to U.S. Census Bureau estimates released Thursday.
It was the second year in a row that population grew here, but the increase so far shows no signs of making up for the loss of 200,000 people over the previous decade.
The growth here reflects a recession-driven trend of fewer people moving out of urban centers, said demographer Ken Johnson of the University of New Hampshire.
“The recession has frozen the population into place, so it can’t move,” Johnson said. “Places like Chicago or the inner suburbs which were losing so many migrants just aren’t losing them anymore at the same rate.”
Like Chicago, suburbs in Cook County also grew slightly, adding about 7,600 people in contrast to losses from 2000-2010.