The U.S. Census just released the most recent county population estimates for 2017.  These are produced every year and provide the most current county-level population numbers in the intervening years between the Decennial Censuses .  Based on this release, the state of Georgia’s population in 2017 was estimated to be 10,429,379 – representing a 1.12% increase or an additional 115,759 people from the previous year.

Urban and Non-Urban Counties

At the county level, the growth rate varied considerably, with “urban” counties showing a greater increase than “non-urban” counties*.  As you can see, however, on the chart below, “non-urban” counties have been steadily increasing in their rate of growth since 2012, albeit not yet to the levels exhibited in “urban” counties.

* Urban counties are defined as those part of a Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA).  Non-urban counties are not part of an MSA.

Focus on the Region

The Atlanta Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) had an estimated population of 5,884,736 in 2017, having gained 89,013 people from the previous year.  Surpassed only by Dallas and Houston, the Atlanta Metro region is ranked 3rd among U.S. metros in the number of people added between 2016 and 2017.  Looking at the percent change in population yields a slightly different story.  At 1.54%, the Atlanta MSA is ranked 69th in percent change in population between the two years.

The chart below shows the population, change, and percent change estimates for the twelve largest U.S. metros.

Large Metro Areas: Population & Change Estimates Comparison, 2016 to 2017

Metro AreaPopulation, 2016Population, 2017Population Change, 2016-2017National Rank, Population ChangePercent Change 2016-2017National Rank, Percent Population Change
New York20,275,17920,320,87645,697150.23%256
Los Angeles13,328,26113,353,90725,646260.19%261
San Francisco4,699,0774,727,35728,280250.60%191

The next chart below allows for comparison among the 10 counties in the Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC) area.  Almost every county experienced population growth over the years displayed.  The single exception was Clayton County between 2012 and 2013, when it decreased by 0.53%, from which it nonetheless rebounded – growing at rate of 1.1% over the next one year period.

Hover over the columns on the chart below to see the year-to-year percent change in population for the corresponding county.  Turn off years on the legend to view county-to-county comparisons for a select set of time periods.

All counties in the 10-county Atlanta region exhibited a population increase from 2017 to 2016, with some growing faster than others. The table below shows the 2016 and 2017 population and percent change estimates for the 10 counties in the Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC) area.

10-County Metro Region: Population & Change Estimates, 2016 to 2017

 Total Population, 2016Total Population, 2017Percent Change, 2016 to 2017
Cherokee County241,600247,5732.47%
Clayton County280,006285,1531.84%
Cobb County750,477755,7540.7%
DeKalb County746,690753,2530.88%
Douglas County142,021143,8821.31%
Fayette County111,248112,5491.17%
Fulton County1,024,2481,041,4231.68%
Gwinnett County907,101920,2601.45%
Henry County221,355225,8132.01%
Rockdale County89,37590,3121.05%
10-County Metro Region4,514,1214,575,9721.37%

Interactive Map

To explore the population and percent change estimates for all counties in the state of Georgia, use the interactive map below.  Simply tap or click on a county on the map to display its population estimates for 2016 and 2017 along with the percent change between the two years.

Stay tuned for future posts that further explore the U.S. Census county population estimates!