Census: Philly Metro Getting Older

The population in Chester County, as well as the greater Philadelphia metro region, continues to get older, according to the latest population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau.

The number of people over the age of 65 in Chester County jumped 13 percent between April 2010 and July 2013, while the overall population only grew 2.1 percent in that same period, based on figures released Thursday by the Census Bureau.

“What we are seeing in the Philadelphia metro counties is similar to the national trend,” said Jennifer Ortman, chief of the Census Bureau’s Population Projections Branch. “The baby boomers are growing older.”

The estimates show Bucks, Delaware, Lancaster, Lehigh and Montgomery counties, as well as the city of Philadelphia, had a surge in the number of residents aged 65 or older.

“By 2030, one in five Americans will be 65 or older,” Ortman said.

Here's a breakdown:

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65 or older in April 201091,21963,87579,72677,78051,604120,727185,309
65 or older in July 2013101,54372,26083,51585,08555,785130,741192,737
Total population in April 2010625,249498,886558,979519,445349,497799,8741,526,006
Total population in July 2013626,976509,468561,973529,600355,092812,3761,553,165

Falling fertility rates also contributed to the change in demographics, she said.

As the older segment of the population grew, those 19-years-old or younger living in Chester County fell 1.4 percent between April 2010 and July 2013, the estimates show.

Ortman expects the makeup of the local and the national population to continue to skew older in the future.

“Most of the United States right now is aging,” she said. “That is a combination of the effects of fertility rates going down and the aging baby boomers.”

Contact Alison Burdo at 610.668.5635, alison.burdo@nbcuni.com or follow @NewsBurd on Twitter.

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