The District also experienced an increase in adults in their late 50s and early 60s during the past decade. At the same time, the number of children younger than 15 dropped by a fifth.
But the biggest change was the spike in the number of young adults.
About 190,000 of the city’s 600,000 residents are between the ages of 20 and 34, a 23 percent jump. The 35,000 additional people in that age group fueled the city’s entire population gain between 2000 and 2010.
They did not settle evenly around the city. The increase was steepest in the wards that encompass Capitol Hill, the Northeast, downtown, Shaw and Logan Circle. The growth among young adults was negligible in the city’s poorest neighborhoods and in its most expensive. The census figures could not be broken down by race.
Demographers and urban experts said the census numbers confirm what is readily evident in Washington’s crowded sidewalk cafes and bike lanes.
“This reflects the resurgence of the city over the decade,” said Alice M. Rivlin, who was chairwoman of the D.C. Financial Control Board. “It’s clearly become a more lively place, with more restaurants, more theaters, more things young people and empty nesters like to do in cities.”
People such as Yuuke Shinomiya.
When he came to the District six years ago from Ohio to take an internship on the Hill, most of the people he arrived with were gone after two years. He intended to follow but stayed for a job with a medical association and became entranced by the city.
“I was just going to be here for six months,” said Shinomiya, 28, who works as a lobbyist for an insurance company. He lives in a Glover Park apartment, practices yoga and bar-hops not just in Adams Morgan and Dupont Circle, but lately also around H Street, Penn Quarter and Logan Circle. “It’s just steadily gotten a lot more hip. A lot of my friends who left for grad school have come back.”
‘Spots cropping up’
That humming singles vibe has caught the attention of David Helfrich, 29, who is just finishing law school at Howard University. Originally from New Hampshire, Helfrich said he hadn’t planned on settling here but is looking for a local job in intellectual property law.
“I’d like to stay. I kind of fell in love with the city,” Helfrich said Wednesday while shopping at the Whole Foods market on P Street in Northwest. His top D.C. draws: the international tone of the city, the robust legal scene and the clubs. Helfrich is a frequent partier at Josephine and Recess in Northwest and Smith Commons on H Street.
“There are spots cropping up all over to cater to people like me,” he said. “It’s gotten to be the perfect mix of professional life and night life. That’s hard to find anywhere.”