Survey finds fewer families with children in Detroit
Detroit — The city has seen the number of families with children decline by 43 percent since 2000 with only about a quarter of households with children, according to a report released this week from the nonprofit Detroit Future City, which also detailed a slowing population decline and job growth.
In a 77-page report, “139 Square Miles,” the average size of Detroit households has declined over the past decade, with an average 2.6 people per household, similar to the country as a whole.
Detroit households with children now make up 26 percent of the city, down from 34 percent in 2000. The figures take into account other types of households in the city that also saw a decline: non-family households make up about 44 percent and households without children, about 31 percent.
In 2000, there were 115,000 families with children living in Detroit; in 2015 there were 65,000 families with children, said Edward Lynch, a planner for Detroit Future City.
“We didn’t look specifically into the causes, but a lot of people point to different things (such as) schools as to why people have been moving out of the city for quite some time,” he said.
Also included in the report is the state of enrollment at the Detroit Public Schools Community District, which has seen ongoing decline. Since the 2010-11 school year, the district has lost 41 percent of its enrollment, more than 30,000 students. Charter school enrollment, meanwhile, increased 14 percent.
The report released Sunday is Detroit Future City’s first comprehensive, citywide, data-driven report since 2012, when the Detroit Future City Strategic Framework was released focusing on a 50-year vision for the city. The latest report included data from several sources, including the American Community Survey from the U.S. Census.
“We’re trying to provide a baseline analysis of the city of Detroit as it stands at this point in time,” Lynch said. “We’re hoping this will be used by a broad range of stakeholders and residents to get a clear picture of what’s happening at this point.”
Other population statistics in the report include that the city is aging, with residents ages 55 and older making up 25 percent of the population. However, the age group 25-34 is growing with 10,000 new residents since 2011.
Detroit Future City says for the first time in 60 years the city’s population decline has slowed.
Other points in the study, which was funded by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation:
■Detroit has experienced job growth since the Great Recession.
■Since the first quarter of 2010, Detroit has added 30,000 private-sector jobs, bringing the total jobs in the city to 238,400. The areas of growth include business services, automotive, financial services and production technology.
■Detroit has seen the largest increase in jobs among those that pay more than $40,000 annually. The jobs are concentrated along Woodward in downtown and Midtown and in the city’s core industrial areas.