June 12, 2013 at 11:20 PM
New census data show that racial and ethnic minorities have grown faster than the white population in Washington since 2010.
Non-Hispanic whites declined from 72.7 percent of the state's total population in 2010 to 71.6 percent in 2012, according to the census.
Meanwhile, other groups--Hispanics, African-Americans, Asians, Native Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders, and people of two or more races--increased as a percentage of the total population in Washington. American Indians/Alaska Natives declined slightly.
Asians are the fastest-growing race or ethnic group in Washington. Between 2010 and 2012, the state’s Asian population increased by 8.1 percent. Asians are also the fastest-growing group nationally.
Among the 50 states, Washington has the fifth-highest percentage of Asians, the fourth-highest percentage of Native Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders, and the fourth-highest percentage of people who are two or more races.
Also in the new census data: Washington is getting older. The median age of state residents rose from 37.3 in 2010 to 37.5 in 2012.
Washington seniors are increasing in number more rapidly than any other age group. Between 2010 and 2012, the population aged 65 and over grew by 9.8 percent--almost four times faster than the state's population as a whole.
The data reveal a wide variance in age among the different race and ethnic groups. Non-Hispanic whites in Washington have a median age of 41.6, the oldest among the groups. People who are two or more races are at the other end of the spectrum, with a median age of 18.8.
June 12, 2013 at 1:19 PM
This may come as unwelcome news to voters in other parts of Washington: King County has even more weight to throw around in statewide elections now.
The county's share of Washington's population rose from 28.7 percent in 2010 to 29.1 percent in 2012, according to recently released data from the Census Bureau.
Not only has King County increased its presence in Washington -- it's also crossed a major population threshold: the county hit the two-million mark in 2012.
King's population is estimated to be 2,007,440 -- an increase of 76,194 people since 2010. King is now one of just 14 U.S. counties with more than two million residents.
Most of King's population gains come from folks moving into the county from other places, rather than "natural" increase (that is, births minus deaths). Between 2010 and 2012, 48,286 people moved to King County; slightly more than half of those came here from outside the United States.
Among the nation's largest counties, King is also one of the fastest growing. Since the 2010 Census, King's population has grown by 3.95 percent -- that ties for 14th among the 100 most populous counties in the U.S.
Even so, King isn't the fastest-growing county in the state. Franklin County in south-central Washington takes that honor, with a growth of 9.8 percent between 2010 and 2012.
In fact, Census data show that Franklin County is the nation's 10th fastest-growing county among those with at least 10,000 residents. It is the only Washington county among the 100 fastest growing in the U.S.
June 3, 2013 at 12:55 PM
If Microsoft's sprawling, 125-building campus in Redmond seems like a city unto itself, that's because it almost is.
As the cubicle-dwellers arrive each morning, Redmond's population bulges to more than twice its size. In fact, newly-released Census data show that Redmond has the greatest spike in daytime population due to commuters, measured by percent increase, among all U.S. places with at least 50,000 residents.
During peak business hours, Redmond's population jumps by 111 percent to about 110,000; that makes it, from 9 to 5, the seventh largest city in Washington. But come nightfall, Redmond shrinks back down to about 52,000, or the state's 19th largest city.
Just 26 percent of Redmond's massive workforce live there. Everybody else is commuting from somewhere else. Is it any wonder the traffic is such a nightmare? But take heart -- light rail to Redmond should be up and running in a mere decade.
Among the nation's 50 largest cities, Seattle ranks ninth for the percent change in its daytime population. The city grows by 27 percent, or about 158,000 people, during the day. Washington, D.C. is No. 1 among big cities with a 79 percent spike in its daytime population. In terms of gross numbers, New York City gains the most -- more than 600,000 commuters.
Daytime population estimates are important numbers for city governments for a variety of reasons, including transportation planning and emergency/disaster preparedness.
May 29, 2013 at 11:08 AM
Washington is among 12 states, along with the District of Columbia, where deaths from firearms outnumber deaths from motor vehicles, according to a report from the Violence Policy Center in Washington, D.C. In 2010, there were 609 gun deaths compared with 554 motor-vehicle deaths in the state.
The numbers for firearms deaths include accidents, suicides, and legal interventions in addition to homicides (according to CDC data, most of Washington's gun deaths were suicides--464 of the 609 fatalities).
Nationally, motor-vehicle deaths still outpace gun deaths. However, the gap between the two numbers has been narrowing; since 1999, motor-vehicle deaths have declined by 20 percent while firearm deaths have jumped by 10 percent.
The other states with more gun deaths than motor vehicle deaths are: Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Michigan, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, and Virginia (see table below for data).
|Jurisdiction||Gun Deaths||Vehicle Deaths||Gun Death Rate/100,000||Vehicle Death Rate/100,000|
|Alaska||144||71||20.28 per 100,000||10.00 per 100,000|
|Arizona||931||795||14.57 per 100,000||12.44 per 100,000|
|Colorado||555||487||11.04 per 100,000||9.68 per 100,000|
|District of Columbia||99||38||16.45 per 100,000||6.32 per 100,000|
|Illinois||1,064||1,042||8.29 per 100,000||8.12 per 100,000|
|Louisiana||864||722||19.06 per 100,000||15.93 per 100,000|
|Maryland||538||514||9.32 per 100,000||8.90 per 100,000|
|Michigan||1,076||1,063||10.89 per 100,000||10.76 per 100,000|
|Nevada||395||289||14.63 per 100,000||10.70 per 100,000|
|Oregon||458||324||11.95 per 100,000||8.46 per 100,000|
|Utah||314||274||11.36 per 100,000||9.91 per 100,000|
|Virginia||875||728||10.94 per 100,000||9.10 per 100,000|
|Washington||609||554||9.06 per 100,000||8.24 per 100,000|
May 24, 2013 at 5:00 AM
It's your typical spring morning in Seattle. Skies look gray. Forecast calls for cool temperatures and periods of light rain throughout the day. Throughout the week, in fact.
You're prepared, though. You always dress in layers. Your outerwear has the latest water-resistant finish. And of course, before you're out the door, you slather yourself in sunscreen.
That's right. New data reveal that, despite the persistent atmospheric gloom here, Seattleites are among the most dedicated sunscreen users in the United States.
According to market research firm Scarborough/GfK MRI, 51 percent of folks in the Seattle area say they wear sunscreen on a daily basis. Among the 60 largest market areas in the U.S., that ranks us No. 2 for sunscreen use, behind only San Francisco. Seattle has a higher percentage of regular sunscreen users than any of the cities across the Sun Belt, from Los Angeles to Miami. Higher even than Honolulu.
Maybe this shouldn't come as a surprise. After all, Seattleites buy more sunglasses per capita than just about anybody else in the county. That strange fact was revealed by a Seattle Times reporter back in 1993.
So what's the reason? Do we buy up sunglasses and glop on the SPFs hoping that we'll actually get some sunshine -- a citywide case of wishful thinking?
Of course, as any dermatologist will insist, it's important to protect your skin from UV rays even on cloudy days. So maybe we're just being smart. Still, it's hard to believe so many of us in Seattle actually think to apply sunscreen day in and day out, even during that relentless gray stretch from November to
April May June July.
I know I don't. How about you? Do you apply sunscreen every day, clouds and rain be damned? Take the poll, and feel free to leave a comment.
May 14, 2013 at 10:17 PM
Your mother would be proud.
According to a new study, folks from Washington are less likely to use obscenities that anybody else in the country.
The study, conducted by Seattle-based mobile-advertising firm Marchex, took a novel approach. Using speech-recognition technology known as "call mining," the company gathered data from recorded telephone calls between customers and businesses around the U.S. Conversations were scanned for polite words, like "please" and "thank you," as well as curse words (use your imagination).
Marchex analyzed more than 600,000 calls placed over the past 12 months to businesses across 30 industries. Only the vocabulary of the customers was evaluated, not that of the business representatives.
With the data tabulated, the Evergreen State emerged as the primmest of the prim. Only one out of every 301 Washingtonians dropped an f-bomb (or other expletive) in the course of a phone conversation. That's a 50 percent lower rate of cursing than the national average. Folks from Massachusetts, even with their lingering Puritan heritage, could only place a distant second behind Washington.
At the opposite end of the spectrum, Ohioans curse at more than double the rate that we do--a profanity in one out of every 147 phone calls.
Washington didn't score in the Top 5 for use of "please" and "thank you," but we ranked in the upper third. South Carolina was No. 1 in the courteous words category, while Wisconsin came in last.
Other findings from the study: 66 percent of cursing comes from men, and morning calls are twice as likely to produce cursing as afternoon or evening calls.
But the real surprise here is Washingtonians' squeaky-clean vocabulary. Why are we so out-of-step with the rest of the nation when it comes to cursing? Are we a state full of goody-two-shoes?
Tell us how you feel about cursing. How much do you do it? Take our online poll -- and tell the truth!
May 9, 2013 at 11:45 AM
Seattle Beer Week is in full swing, with an extensive schedule of events celebrating the craft of brewing in our region. And when it comes to quality beers, Seattleites know their stuff. In fact, we rank just a fraction behind No. 1 Portland for the percentage of folks who drink microbrews, according to Scarborough Research.
But in this beer-loving town, who loves beer most of all?
To find out, I analyzed the beer-buying habits of residents in 76 Seattle neighborhoods using Experian market data. After ranking the neighborhoods in three categories, enumerated below, I tallied the scores to determine the overall winner.
#1. Budget: Where are the biggest spenders on beer?
You might say folks in Portage Bay have beer tastes on a champagne budget. Their $283 average household spending on beer is 22 percent higher than the city average. Fremont and Tangletown were runners-up in this category.
#2. Preference: Where is beer the drink of choice?
When choosing their poison, Georgetowners overwhelming favor beer. Beer makes up 48 percent of all alcohol purchases by folks who live in this neighborhood. Georgetown edged out Capitol Hill South and Lower Queen Anne for the win.
#3. Dependency: Where is beer one of the four food groups?
College kids may be broke, but they have their priorities. U-District residents spend, on average, 5 percent of their total food budget on beer, easily capturing the win in this category. Capitol Hill South and Fremont were a distant second and third, respectively.
And the winner is...
Seattle has many deserving neighborhoods, but there can only be one winner. With all the scores tallied, Fremont rose to the top like the head of foam on a pint of Pike Kilt Lifter. Fremont is the only neighborhood to rank in the Top 10 in all categories.
So lift a pint to Fremont this weekend. And to all the neighborhoods that didn't win, remember: There's always next year.
May 6, 2013 at 8:50 AM
Big buzz in Seattle foodie circles: renowned restaurant Din Tai Fung will open a new location at University Village later this year, according to The Seattle Times. The Taiwanese chain, famous for its Shanghai-style soup dumplings, already has a branch in Bellevue that is always packed. The new location will probably have long waits, too, but at least Seattleites won't have to cross the bridge to get their "xiao long bao" fix in the future.
The popularity of Din Tai Fung here, though, may be something of an exception among restaurants serving Chinese cuisine. Despite the thriving restaurant culture in Seattle, where eating out has become the norm rather than an occasional treat, patronage of Chinese restaurants is surprisingly low.
Less than a third of people in the Seattle metropolitan area say they've eaten in a Chinese restaurant in the past 30 days, according to surveys conducted by market data firm Scarborough Research. That's 22 percent below the U.S. average, and it ranks Seattle 50th among the 50 largest market areas in the nation.
That's right -- last place.
In top-ranked San Francisco, more than half the population say they've enjoyed a meal at a Chinese restaurant within the past 30 days. That's 63 percent higher than Seattle.
We love eating out here--but why are so few of us choosing Chinese restaurants when we do? Has Chinese food been eclipsed by other cuisines in Seattle? Or is there some other reason?
Theories? Thoughts? Feel free to sound off in the comments section.