Chesapeake, Virginia Population 2019

242,634

Chesapeake is an independent city located in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Chesapeake is not located within a county. Chesapeake is located on the border of North Carolina.

The 2018 estimated population of Chesapeake is 242,634. Chesapeake is the third-most populous city in Virginia and the second-largest city by land area in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Chesapeake spans over 350.95 square miles and has a population density of 630 people per square mile. The population density in Chesapeake is 260% higher than the Virginia average and 660% higher than the national average. According to the 2010 United States Census, for every 100 females in Chesapeake, there are 94.4 males.

Chesapeake Diversity and Language

According to the 2010 United States Census, the racial makeup of Chesapeake was 62.6% white, 29.8% black, 0.4% Native American, 2.9% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 1.2% from other races, and 3.0% from two or more races. 4.4% of the population were Hispanic or Latinos of any race. Approximately 50.7% of the population is non-Hispanic white, according to 2012 estimates.

English is the primary language in Chesapeake, with 92.41% of residents speaking only English. 7.59% of residents speak another non-English language. The most common non-English language spoken is Spanish, which is spoken by 3.76% of the population.

Chesapeake History

Chesapeake has played a significant role in the birth of the United States since the arrival of colonial settlers to the area in 1620. The Virginia Colony was formed in 1691 and Norfolk County included the area encompassing what would become the cities of Norfolk, Portsmouth, and South Norfolk. South Norfolk would later become Chesapeake.

During the American Revolutionary War, the colonists fought and won the Battle of Great Bridge in 1775. The victory resulted in the removal of the British Government from the Colony of Virginia.

South Norfolk became an incorporated town in Norfolk County in 1919 and became an independent city in 1922. The residents of South Norfolk wanted to put their jurisdiction on equal ground with the larger cities of Norfolk and Portsmouth; however, South Norfolk was about to lose all of the county land adjoining it to the city of Norfolk. In 1963, Chesapeake was formed as a new independent city of South Norfolk consolidated with Norfolk County.

Up until the late 1980s and 1990s, Chesapeake remained relatively rural or suburban and served as a bedroom community for Norfolk and Virginia. Chesapeake residents typically commuted to these larger cities from Chesapeake. During and after this period, Chesapeake started to experience significant growth in both the population and industries and businesses. While the growth was mostly positive, it did come with several issues, such as strains on municipal infrastructure.

Chesapeake hosted the first trial of alleged Beltway sniper Lee Boyd Malvo for shootings in 2002. A jury convicted him of murder and sentenced him to life in prison without parole. Chesapeake made national headlines for the trial.

Chesapeake Population Growth

The Chesapeake population has had a generally steady growth with a few periods of decreasing population, such as a 48.1% decrease from 1950 to 1960. Chesapeake’s largest period of population growth happened between 1940 and 1950, with an increase from 35,828 people to 99.537, or 177.8%. Between 2010 and 2018, Chesapeake’s population is estimated to have grown 9.2%, a little over 1% per year.

Chesapeake, Virginia's estimated population is 242,634 according to the most recent United States census estimates. Chesapeake, Virginia is the 3rd largest city in Virginia based on official 2017 estimates from the US Census Bureau.

The population density is 716.77 people/mi² (276.75 people/km²).

The overall median age is 36.6 years, 35.3 years for males, and 38.2 years for females. For every 100 females there are 95.4 males.

Based on data from the American Community Survey, in 2017 there were 88,856 households in the city, with an average size of 2.76 people per household. The homeowner vacancy rate was 1%, with a median rent of $1201/month. The median house has 6.4 rooms, and has a value of $260,900.

The median income for households in Chesapeake, Virginia is $72,214, while the mean household income is $88,423.

Chesapeake Demographics

According to the most recent ACS, the racial composition of Chesapeake was:

  • White: 61.82%
  • Black or African American: 29.81%
  • Two or more races: 3.46%
  • Asian: 3.25%
  • Other race: 1.37%
  • Native American: 0.19%
  • Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander: 0.11%

How Many People Live in Chesapeake, Virginia?

242,634
Year Population Growth Annual Growth Rate
2018242,6342,3070.96%
2017240,3272,7361.15%
2016237,5912,4231.03%
2015235,1681,7880.77%
2014233,3803,0501.32%
2013230,3302,2550.99%
2012228,0752,7431.22%
2011225,3321,7820.80%
2010223,55024,3661.16%
2000199,18447,2082.74%
1990151,97637,4902.87%
1980114,48624,9062.48%
197089,5800.00%

Population by Race

Race Population Percentage
White145,52161.82%
Black or African American70,17129.81%
Two or More Races8,1373.46%
Asian7,6553.25%
Some Other Race3,2321.37%
American Indian and Alaska Native4450.19%
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander2490.11%

Chesapeake Population Pyramid 2019

Chesapeake Median Age

36.6


Total

35.3


Male

38.2


Female

Chesapeake Adults

There are 177,857 adults, (28,596 of whom are seniors) in Chesapeake.

Chesapeake Age Dependency

57.7

Age Dependency Ratio

19.2

Old Age Dependency Ratio

38.6

Child Dependency Ratio

Chesapeake Sex Ratio

Female

120,475

51.18%

Male

114,935

48.82%

Chesapeake Households and Families

Chesapeake Renter vs Owner Occupied by Household Type

Chesapeake Household Types

Type Owner Renter
Married83.3%16.7%
All70.9%29.1%
Non Family60.2%39.8%
Male56.6%43.4%
Female48%52%

70.9%

Rate of Home Ownership

Type Count Average Size Owned
All83,0312.7670.9
Married45,6153.2683.3
Non Family20,7331.2160.2
Female12,7193.3848
Male3,9643.0756.6

3.21

Average Family Size

2.76

Average Household Size

3.6%

Unmarried (Opposite Sex)

0.4%

Unmarried (Same Sex)

Chesapeake Education

Education Attained Count Percentage
Less Than 9th Grade3,3152.12%
9th to 12th Grade9,1595.85%
High School Graduate40,27425.70%
Some College39,75625.37%
Associates Degree14,8309.47%
Bachelors Degree30,66019.57%
Graduate Degree18,68611.93%

Chesapeake Educational Attainment by Race

Name Total High School Bachelors
White95,78190,01031,667
Black45,64640,22111,786
Hispanic7,0936,3822,250
Asian5,6185,1392,812
Multiple Races2,9332,8331,064
Other Race1,7061,464434
Native American401384117
Islander132132

The highest rate of high school graduation is among islander people with a rate of 100.00%.

The highest rate of bachelors degrees is among asian people with a rate of 50.05%.

Name Average Male Female
Overall$42,560$51,551$36,092
Less Than High School$21,421$23,892$16,775
High School Grad$31,217$38,844$24,185
Some College$40,552$50,946$32,297
Bachelors Degree$51,789$66,224$44,426
Graduate Degree$73,170$95,807$57,003

$42,560

Average Earnings

$51,551

Average Male

$36,092

Average Female

Chesapeake Language

Chesapeake Language by Age

Chesapeake Language

92.41% of Chesapeake residents speak only English, while 7.59% speak other languages. The non-English language spoken by the largest group is Spanish, which is spoken by 3.76% of the population.

Chesapeake Poverty

Chesapeake Poverty by Race

Name Total In Poverty Poverty Rate
Black66,31210,66316.08%
White134,8288,3836.22%
Hispanic13,0712,19716.81%
Multiple8,0696708.30%
Other3,20152116.28%
Asian7,6252773.63%
Native400297.25%
Islander235145.96%

9.60%

Overall Poverty Rate

7.94%

Male Poverty Rate

11.11%

Female Poverty Rate

Poverty in Chesapeake

The race most likely to be in poverty in Chesapeake is Hispanic, with 16.81% below the poverty level.

The race least likely to be in poverty in Chesapeake is Asian, with 3.63% below the poverty level.

The poverty rate among those that worked full-time for the past 12 months was 2.31%. Among those working part-time, it was 10.84%, and for those that did not work, the poverty rate was 14.46%.

Name Poverty
Less Than High School20.19%
High School9.82%
Some College6.68%
Bachelors or Greater1.98%
Name Poverty
Female Unemployed27.05%
Male Unemployed25.02%
Female Employed6.28%
Male Employed3.35%

Chesapeake Income

Chesapeake Income by Household Type

Name Median Mean
Households$72,214$88,423
Families$83,169$98,584
Married Families$98,972$113,453
Non Families$42,923$53,946

Chesapeake Marital Status

Chesapeake Marital Status

Marriage Rates

52.4%

Overall Marriage Rate

53.8%

Male Marriage Rate

51.1%

Female Marriage Rate

Chesapeake Married by Age and Sex

Chesapeake Marriage

The age group where males are most likely to be married is 55-64, while the female age group most likely to be married is 55-64.

Chesapeake Marital Status by Race

Chesapeake Veterans

26,910

Number of Veterans

22,385

Male Veterans

4,525

Female Veterans

War Veterans
First Gulf War9,956
Second Gulf War9,832
Vietnam6,524
Korea988
World War II536
Age Group Veterans
35 to 5410,195
55 to 645,918
65 to 744,084
18 to 343,905
75+2,808

Chesapeake Veterans by Race

Name Veterans % of Total
White18,08416.87%
Black7,29013.99%
Hispanic1,47718.59%
2 or More50115.50%
Other47122.13%
Asian4587.54%
Indian6816.43%
Hawaiian3828.79%

Chesapeake Veterans by Education

3.48%

Veteran Poverty Rate

17.18%

Veteran Disability Rate

Chesapeake Employment Status

65.9%

Labor Force Participation

58.7%

Employment Rate

5.8%

Unemployment Rate

Chesapeake Place of Birth

Origin of Non Citizens

Non citizens include legal permanent residents (green card holders), international students, temporary workers, humanitarian migrants, and illegal immigrants.

Origin of Naturalized Citizens

52.75%

Born in Virginia

94.70%

Native Born

5.30%

Foreign Born

1.95%

Non Citizen

Place of Birth

94.70% of Chesapeake residents were born in the United States, with 52.75% having been born in Virginia. 1.95% of residents are not US citizens. Of those not born in the United States, the largest percentage are from Asia.