Tacoma, Washington Population 2018

Tacoma is a port city located in the state of Washington. It serves as the county seat of Piece County. Tacoma is located along the Puget Sound, just miles from the cities of Seattle and Olympia. The city was founded in 1833. Tacoma has an estimated population of 207,948 people, making it the third most populous city in the state. The city has seen its ups and downs throughout the years in terms of population, but recent restorations and revitalization projects have been launched in hopes of drawing in more inhabitants.

Tacoma History

Native Americans inhabited what is now Tacoma for years before being settled by Europeans. The Puyallup was a notable group that lived in the region during its earliest years. What would later become Tacoma was settled by Nicolas Delin who built a sawmill close to Commencement Bay. However, all was later abandoned during the Indian War. It was in 1864 when Job Carr came to live in the area, but later sold his claim to Morton McCarver, who came up with the idea of Tacoma City.

The city was incorporated in 1875 because it was to be the site of a Northern Pacific Railroad depot. However, the depot was built several miles from the development as an area known as New Tacoma. These regions, however, merged in 1884 and experienced a population boom shortly thereafter.

It was in 1885 that hundreds of Chinese residents were evicted from the city and sent to Portland, Oregon. As the 19th century ended, a streetcar accident occurred in Tacoma, resulting in many deaths. During the early 20th century, smelter workers went on strike in Tacoma, demanding a pay raise. The strike ended just months later, with the workers not getting the extra pay they were seeking.

The 1920s saw a period of growth with the development of the first movie studio in the city. However, the stock market crash on 1929 brought misfortune to the city. Shortly after, Tacoma experienced one of its coldest winters in history, resulting in major power outages. The local economy was impacted, businesses shut their doors, and foreclosures were on the rise. The 1930s saw an increase of population in Hooverville, the city’s homeless community, as families were evicted from their homes.

The 1950s brought about more problems for the city as government corruption was uncovered. The commission-style government was changed to a mayor and city-manager system. The city’s economy continued to decline, with many streets and stores completely abandoned. The 1980s and early 1990s saw a higher rate of crime, but with the 2000s came a reduction in crime. The city was later named as one of the Most Livable Communities.

It was during the 1990s that revitalization efforts began. Among the renovations were the federal courthouse, the Tacoma Art Museum, and America’s Car Museum.

Tacoma Demographics

Recent estimates show that Tacoma’s population has almost reached 208,000 inhabitants. The city’s total area is over 62 square miles with a population density of over 3,990 people per square mile. Almost 65% of the city’s population is white, over 12% is African American, over 8% is Asian, and over 8% are mixed race. There are over 11% Hispanic or Latino residents living in Tacoma.

The largest age group is 25 to 44, which makes up 29.6% of the population. Over one-quarter are between the ages of 45 and 64. Twenty-three percent of residents are under the age of 18, while 11.3% are over the age of 64. The population is made up of 50.6% female residents and 49.4% male residents. About 15.9% of the population lives below the federal poverty line.

There are many international companies located in Tacoma. The top employer is the Joint Base Lewish-McChord, which employs over 66,000 people. The public-school districts, the State of Washington, and the city’s health systems are also major employers.

Tacoma Population Growth

Despite some troubles in its past, the city has always seen population growth at every 10-year census. The population experienced its largest growth between 1880 and 1890, growing by over 3,000%. Population growth has slowed in recent years, but it still continues to climb. Based on recent estimates, the population has grown by 6.5% since the last census taken in 2010. Revitalization of the city, particularly the downtown area, is expected to continue to bring in new residents to this city.

Year Population Growth Annual Growth Rate
2017213,4183,1141.48%
2016210,3043,5301.71%
2015206,7743,0321.49%
2014203,7421,5810.78%
2013202,1616560.33%
2012201,5052,0441.02%
2011199,4611,2570.63%
2010198,2044,6480.24%
2000193,55616,8920.92%
1990176,66418,1631.09%
1980158,5014,0940.26%
1970154,4076,4280.43%
1960147,9794,3060.30%
1950143,67334,2652.76%
1940109,4082,5910.24%
1930106,8179,8520.97%
192096,96513,2221.48%
191083,74346,0298.30%
190037,7141,7080.46%
189036,0060.00%

Tacoma Population in 2018Source: By Dicklyon [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], from Wikimedia Commons

Population by Race

Race Population
White134,255
Black or African American20,851
Asian18,667
Two or More Races18,207
Some Other Race8,611
American Indian and Alaska Native2,661
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander2,350

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

Tacoma Population Pyramid 2018

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

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

Tacoma Median Age

36


Total

34.9


Male

37.3


Female

Tacoma Adults

There are 160,986 adults, (26,317 of which are seniors) in Tacoma.

Tacoma Age Dependency

52.8

Age Dependency Ratio

19.6

Old Age Dependency Ratio

33.1

Child Dependency Ratio

Tacoma Sex Ratio

Female

103,833

50.50%

Male

101,769

49.50%

Tacoma Households and Families

Tacoma Renter vs Owner Occupied by Household Type

Tacoma Household Types

Type Owner Renter
Married69.5%30.5%
All50%50%
Male40.5%59.5%
Female40.1%59.9%
Non Family36.6%63.4%

50.0%

Rate of Home Ownership

Tacoma Households by Type

Type Count Average Size Owned
All80,3332.4950
Non Family35,1691.3536.6
Married31,2263.2869.5
Female10,1343.6140.1
Male3,8043.5440.5

3.23

Average Family Size

2.49

Average Household Size

7.8%

Unmarried (Opposite Sex)

0.7%

Unmarried (Same Sex)

Tacoma Households

Tacoma Education

Tacoma Educational Attainment by Sex (over 25)

Education Attained Count Percentage
Less Than 9th Grade6,1934.43%
9th to 12th Grade10,7027.65%
High School Graduate37,92727.11%
Some College35,25625.20%
Associates Degree12,4908.93%
Bachelors Degree24,63217.60%
Graduate Degree12,7219.09%

Tacoma Educational Attainment by Race

Name Total High School Bachelors
White92,21885,14728,098
Black14,40013,0102,423
Asian13,0639,3643,406
Hispanic11,2237,7081,618
Multiple Races6,8315,9871,745
Other Race4,3892,530282
Native American1,5611,307214
Islander1,4851,269103

The highest rate of high school graduation is among white people with a rate of 92.33%.

The highest rate of bachelors degrees is among white people with a rate of 30.47%.

Tacoma Earnings by Educational Attainment

Name Average Male Female
Overall$37,325$41,741$32,275
Less Than High School$25,655$28,321$20,597
High School Grad$30,861$35,126$25,323
Some College$35,436$40,913$30,200
Bachelors Degree$50,481$58,503$44,789
Graduate Degree$63,084$73,179$60,441

$37,325

Average Earnings

$41,741

Average Male

$32,275

Average Female

Tacoma Language

Tacoma Language by Age

Tacoma Language

80.77% of Tacoma residents speak only English, while 19.23% speak other languages. The largest non-English language is Asian, which is spoken by 7.79% of the population.

Tacoma Poverty

Tacoma Poverty by Race

Name Total In Poverty Poverty Rate
White119,78916,46813.75%
Hispanic22,8426,09426.68%
Black20,4575,01924.53%
Asian18,3603,93421.43%
Multiple17,8503,82621.43%
Other8,5371,84121.56%
Native2,50085734.28%
Islander2,33459025.28%

17.91%

Overall Poverty Rate

16.49%

Male Poverty Rate

19.30%

Female Poverty Rate

Poverty in Tacoma

The race most likely to be in poverty in Tacoma is Native, with 34.28% below the poverty level.

The race least likely to be in poverty in Tacoma is White, with 13.75% below the poverty level.

The poverty rate among those that worked full-time for the past 12 months was 2.39%. Among those working part-time, it was 21.95%, and for those that did not work, the poverty rate was 30.13%.

Tacoma Poverty Rate by Education

Name Poverty
Less Than High School31.60%
High School17.88%
Some College14.29%
Bachelors or Greater5.87%

Tacoma Poverty Rate by Employment Status and Sex

Name Poverty
Female Unemployed43.27%
Male Unemployed36.24%
Female Employed8.89%
Male Employed6.09%

Tacoma Income

Tacoma Income by Household Type

Name Median Mean
Households$53,553$67,669
Families$65,075$79,783
Married Families$78,896$94,258
Non Families$37,555$48,454

Tacoma Marital Status

Tacoma Marital Status

Marriage Rates

41.0%

Overall Marriage Rate

42.8%

Male Marriage Rate

39.4%

Female Marriage Rate

Tacoma Married by Age and Sex

Tacoma 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.

Tacoma Marital Status by Race

Tacoma Veterans

Tacoma Veterans by War

19,031

Number of Veterans

16,984

Male Veterans

2,047

Female Veterans

Name Veterans
Vietnam5,795
Second Gulf War4,689
First Gulf War4,285
Korea1,353
World War II668

Tacoma Veterans by Age

Name Veterans
35 to 545,356
55 to 644,379
65 to 743,504
18 to 343,050
75+2,742

Tacoma Veterans by Race

Name Veterans % of Total
White13,87012.59%
Black2,90817.91%
Hispanic1,0947.60%
2 or More7208.26%
Asian6384.28%
Other4327.64%
Indian23212.15%
Hawaiian23113.22%

Tacoma Veterans by Education

9.91%

Veteran Poverty Rate

30.07%

Veteran Disability Rate

Tacoma Employment Status

Tacoma Employment by Age

64.1%

Labor Force Participation

58.1%

Employment Rate

8%

Unemployment Rate

Tacoma Employment by Race

Tacoma Employment by Education

Tacoma 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

50.89%

Born in Washington

86.85%

Native Born

13.15%

Foreign Born

6.18%

Non Citizen

Place of Birth

86.85% of Tacoma residents were born in the United States, with 50.89% having been born in Washington. 6.18% of residents are not US citizens. Of those not born in the United States, the largest percentage are from Asia.