Salt Lake City, Utah Population 2018

Salt Lake City, usually shortened to SLC or Salt Lake, is the capital and most populous city of Utah. Salt Lake City is one of only 2 major urban areas in the Great Basin, along with Reno, Nevada, and it is the largest city in the Intermountain West.

The Salt Lake City metropolitan area has an estimated population of 1.14 million, while the city proper has a population estimated at 192,000. The Salt Lake City-Ogden metropolitan area, including Weber, Davis and Salt Lake counties, had a population of 1.34 million in 2000. The Census Bureau has since added Tooele and Summit counties to the Salt Lake City metro area while removing Davis and Weber counties. The larger Salt Lake City-Provo-Orem, Utah Combined Statistical Area has a population of 2.4 million and is comprised of a corridor of development that stretches 120 miles along the Wasatch Front.

Salt Lake has 6.75% of Utah's total population and 18% of Salt Lake County's population. The city proper is more densely populated than the surrounding area with a population density of more than 1,689 people per square mile, or 1,050 per square kilometer.

Salt Lake City Suburbs

Aside from Salt Lake City, major suburbs and incorporated places in the Salt Lake City metropolitan area include:

  • West Valley City is a suburb of Salt Lake City with a population estimated at 135,000, which makes it the second-largest city in Utah. West Valley City has a population density of 3,700 people per square mile.
  • Murray is a city on the Wasatch Front and the 14th largest city in Utah with a population estimated at 50,000 with a density of 3,700 people per square kilometer.
  • Midvale is a city in the Salt Lake City metropolitan area with a population of 31,000 and a density of 5,200 people per square mile.
  • Draper is located in Utah and Salt Lake counties about 20 miles south of Salt Lake City. It has a population of 45,000 with a density of 1,500 people per square mile.
  • Tooele is located in Tooele County south of Salt Lake City with a population of 33,000 and a density of 1,065 people per square mile.
  • Sandy is a suburb of Salt Lake City and the 6th largest city in Utah with a population of 90,000.
  • West Jordan is one of the fastest-growing suburbs of Salt Lake with a population of 110,000 (density of 3,356 people per square mile), which makes it the 4th most populous city in Utah.
  • South Jordan has a population of 60,000 with a density of 2,531 people per square mile.
  • Taylorsville has a population of 60,000 with a density of 5,415 people per square mile.
  • Wendover is located in Tooele County on the western border of Utah and contiguous with West Wendover, Nevada. Wendover has a population of 1,500.
  • Park City is located in Summit County about 32 miles southeast of Salt Lake City. Park City has a population of just 8,000, but the tourist population greatly exceeds the number of permanent residents with 3 major ski resorts in the city and the location of the Sundance Film Festival, the largest independent film festival in the U.S.

Salt Lake City Demographics

At the 2010 Census, the racial composition of Salt Lake City was:

  • White: 75.1%
  • African American: 2.7%
  • Asian: 4.4%
  • Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander: 2.0%
  • American Indian and Alaska Native: 1.2%
  • Other race: 10.7%
  • Mixed race: 3.7%
  • Hispanic or Latino of any race: 22.3%

For most of its history, Salt Lake has been mostly white. Between 1860 and 1950, white people accounted for 99% of the population. The demographics of Salt Lake City have changed dramatically over the last few decades. Today, Hispanics make up 22% of the total population and there is a growing gay community. 2% of the population are Pacific Islander, mostly Samoans and Tongans.

Housing costs in the Wasatch Front have been inflated with low housing vacancies and large families. This means that 1 out of every 6 people live below the poverty line.

Despite being the headquarters for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church), under 50% of the population of Salt Lake City belongs to the LDS Church. This is lower than in the rural areas of Utah. LDS members account for 62% of Utah's total population.

Like most large cities, there are many ethnic enclaves in Salt Lake City. Hispanic and Latino Americans account for a large percentage of the population in the Glendale and Rose Park areas. The Pacific Islander population is also centered in Glendale and Rose Park, as well as Poplar Grove. The majority of the Pacific Islanders in the city belong to the LDS church. There are also new immigrant communities outside the city limits of Nepalies and refugees from Myanmar.

Salt Lake is considered one of the most gay-friendly places to live in the country with a large gay community, as well as the largest Jewish congregation in Utah. This has led to controversy from socially conservative officials, however. A 2006 UCLA study found that 7.6% of the population of the city is openly bisexual or gay, compared to less than 4% for the metropolitan area.

Salt Lake City History

Before Europeans arrived in the area, Ute, Shoshone and Paiute people lived in the area for thousands of years. It was actually in the territory of the Northwestern Shoshone at the time Salt Lake City was founded, but their occupation was seasonal. No aboriginal title by the group was ever recognized by the government.

Salt Lake City was founded in 1847 by Brigham Young and other Mormon followers. The city was originally named the Great Salt Lake City because of its proximity to the Great Salt Lake, but the "Great" was dropped by 1868. The Latter-day Saints were the first permanent settlers to the area, as they were looking for an isolated area to practice their religion. The site for the Salt Lake Temple was designated just days after arriving in the area, and it later became a famous landmark. The temple took 40 years to complete.

The Mormon pioneers then organized a state called Deseret and petitioned for recognition in 1849. The United States rebuffed this and established the Utah territory, designating Fillmore as the capital, although Salt Lake was replaced as capital a decade later. Meanwhile, the population of Salt Lake continued to grow as Mormon converts and gold seekers flooded the new city, which became one of the largest in the American Old West.

Before long, disputes with the government over the Mormon practice of polygamy worsened until, in 1857, President James Buchanan declared the area in rebellion and began the Utah War. In 1890, the LDS Church began to abandon polygamy, paving the way for Utah's statehood in 1896.

Salt Lake City Facts

  • Salt Lake City was ranked as the most vain city in the U.S. by Forbes based on cosmetics spending and the high number of plastic surgeons.
  • In the early 20th century, pollution was so bad in the city that it created a Smoke Department.
  • In the 1970s, the nearby city of Bingham was destroyed by a massive open pit copper mine.
  • The mountains near Salt Lake receive an average snowfall of 500 inches.
  • Salt Lake and Utah are known for world-class snow that is unusually dry.
  • SLC has one of the largest LGBT communities in the country.
  • While the Great Salt Lake is larger than the state of Delaware, it has an average depth of just 13 feet.
Year Population Growth Annual Growth Rate

Salt Lake City Population in 2018Source: By Jonnyapple [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], from Wikimedia Commons

Population by Race

Race Population
Some Other Race25,024
Two or More Races5,327
Black or African American4,702
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander4,143
American Indian and Alaska Native2,086

Race Data via US Census (2016 ACS 5-Year Survey)

Salt Lake City Population Pyramid 2018

0%2%4%6%8%10%12% Male Population0%2%4%6%8%10%12% Female Population80757065605550454035302520151050

Data via US Census (2016 ACS 5-Year Survey): Table S0101

Salt Lake City Median Age







Salt Lake City Adults

There are 150,859 adults, (19,910 of which are seniors) in Salt Lake City.

Salt Lake City Age Dependency


Age Dependency Ratio


Old Age Dependency Ratio


Child Dependency Ratio

Salt Lake City Sex Ratio







Salt Lake City Households and Families

Salt Lake City Renter vs Owner Occupied by Household Type

Salt Lake City Household Types

Type Owner Renter
Non Family34.5%65.5%


Rate of Home Ownership

Salt Lake City Households by Type

Type Count Average Size Owned
Non Family35,8451.4534.5


Average Family Size


Average Household Size


Unmarried (Opposite Sex)


Unmarried (Same Sex)

Salt Lake City Households

Salt Lake City Education

Salt Lake City Educational Attainment by Sex (over 25)

Education Attained Count Percentage
Less Than 9th Grade8,0896.44%
9th to 12th Grade7,6266.07%
High School Graduate21,17016.85%
Some College24,32919.36%
Associates Degree8,6386.87%
Bachelors Degree31,39024.98%
Graduate Degree24,40819.43%

Salt Lake City Educational Attainment by Race

Name Total High School Bachelors
Other Race12,9425,7341,322
Multiple Races2,1341,8441,006
Native American1,4391,282261

The highest rate of high school graduation is among white people with a rate of 95.78%.

The highest rate of bachelors degrees is among white people with a rate of 62.79%.

Salt Lake City Earnings by Educational Attainment

Name Average Male Female
Less Than High School$21,520$25,856$16,727
High School Grad$24,743$27,883$21,185
Some College$30,408$32,946$26,801
Bachelors Degree$40,103$45,140$35,062
Graduate Degree$61,366$73,378$55,275


Average Earnings


Average Male


Average Female

Salt Lake City Language

Salt Lake City Language by Age

Salt Lake City Language

73.30% of Salt Lake City residents speak only English, while 26.70% speak other languages. The largest non-English language is Spanish, which is spoken by 15.87% of the population.

Salt Lake City Poverty

Salt Lake City Poverty by Race

Name Total In Poverty Poverty Rate


Overall Poverty Rate


Male Poverty Rate


Female Poverty Rate

Poverty in Salt Lake City

The race most likely to be in poverty in Salt Lake City is Native, with 44.63% below the poverty level.

The race least likely to be in poverty in Salt Lake City is White, with 13.45% below the poverty level.

The poverty rate among those that worked full-time for the past 12 months was 3.99%. Among those working part-time, it was 26.24%, and for those that did not work, the poverty rate was 32.24%.

Salt Lake City Poverty Rate by Education

Name Poverty
Less Than High School29.04%
High School19.60%
Some College14.39%
Bachelors or Greater6.85%

Salt Lake City Poverty Rate by Employment Status and Sex

Name Poverty
Female Unemployed49.46%
Male Unemployed41.91%
Female Employed11.71%
Male Employed10.09%

Salt Lake City Income

Salt Lake City Income by Household Type

Name Median Mean
Married Families$79,881$111,168
Non Families$35,335$51,863

Salt Lake City Marital Status

Salt Lake City Marital Status

Marriage Rates


Overall Marriage Rate


Male Marriage Rate


Female Marriage Rate

Salt Lake City Married by Age and Sex

Salt Lake City Marriage

The age group where males are most likely to be married is Over65, while the female age group most likely to be married is 35To44.

Salt Lake City Marital Status by Race

Salt Lake City Veterans

Salt Lake City Veterans by War


Number of Veterans


Male Veterans


Female Veterans

Name Veterans
Second Gulf War1,325
First Gulf War1,246
World War II623

Salt Lake City Veterans by Age

Name Veterans
65 to 741,945
55 to 641,779
35 to 541,719
18 to 34830

Salt Lake City Veterans by Race

Name Veterans % of Total
2 or More2497.84%

Salt Lake City Veterans by Education


Veteran Poverty Rate


Veteran Disability Rate

Salt Lake City Employment Status

Salt Lake City Employment by Age


Labor Force Participation


Employment Rate


Unemployment Rate

Salt Lake City Employment by Race

Salt Lake City Employment by Education

Salt Lake City 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


Born in Utah


Native Born


Foreign Born


Non Citizen

Place of Birth

82.46% of Salt Lake City residents were born in the United States, with 47.82% having been born in Utah. 12.81% of residents are not US citizens. Of those not born in the United States, the largest percentage are from Latin America.