Topeka, Kansas Population 2018

Topeka is a city located in the state of Kansas. It is the county seat for Shawnee County and it is also the state capital. Recent estimates show that the population of the city is 127,473.

Topeka History

As with other cities located in the Great Plains, Topeka was originally inhabited by native tribes. The land that is now Kansas changed ownership several times throughout the 16th and 18th centuries. At the beginning of the 19th century, ownership went to the United States following the Louisiana Purchase.

It was during the 1840s when a ferry service was established crossing the Kansas River. While settlers could cross the river, the area that is now Topeka was not yet developed. It was when a military road was developed in the 1850s when the area was settled. A cabin was built in 1854 and the Topeka Town Association was established. It was during the next decade when the city became a hub for commercial activity.

It was also during this time when the state was admitted to the Union and was the 34th state in the United States. Topeka was selected as the capital. The construction of the capitol building began in 1866 but took 37 years to complete.

Population growth was slow because of a drought in the 1860s and the Civil War. However, once the war was over the city began to grow. During this time, many former slaves settled in Topeka, and Washburn University was also established as the population and the city itself grew. A depression in the late 19th century could have been disastrous but residents made it through and the population doubled. The population continued to grow with the introduction of the automobile industry, with Topeka serving as the site of the Smith Automobile Company, which was in business for 10 years. Another notable fact about Topeka at this time was that it was the site of Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka, a Supreme Court case that overturned Plessy vs. Ferguson and made racial segregation in schools illegal. However, despite the court ruling, racial discrimination continued to burden the city for many years.

The city was struck by a devastating tornado in 1966. The city suffered about $100 million in damage because of the tornado and was one of the most expensive in history. However, the city did recover and its economy and population continued to grow. However, the 1970s saw a drop in population with the closing of Forbes Air Force Base, with more than 10,000 people leaving the city. Population and the city grew again in the next decade with the construction of a mall, airport and convention center.

Today, the city continues to grow as more jobs are created and the city plans to redevelop many areas, including the State Capitol.

Topeka Demographics

Topeka has a population of over 126,000 residents. The city’s total area is over 61 square miles, and it has a population density of 2,100 people per square mile.

Over 76% of the city’s population is white, while 11.3% is black, 1.4% is Native American, 1.3% is Asian, 4.7% are another race, and 4.9% are mixed race. People of Hispanic or Latino descent make up over 13% of the population. People between the ages of 25 to 44 make up the largest age group, accounting for over 26% of the population. Nearly one-quarter of the population is under 18, while 14.3% are at least 75 years old. There are more females than males living in Topeka, with women making up 52.2% of the population. Approximately 8.5% of Topeka’s population lives below the federal poverty line.

The city’s top employer is the State of Kansas, employing more than 8,000 people. Over 22% of residents work in the educational, health and social services industry, with the city’s four school districts employing about 4,700 people and Washburn University providing around 1,650 jobs.

Topeka Population Growth

Topeka’s population has seen its ups and downs throughout the years, with some censuses showing significant, rapid growth while others reflect smaller percentages of growth or even declining numbers. Most recently, the population is down 0.5% since the 2010 census. However, this downward trend is not expected to continue, although rapid growth of the city is not expected any time in the near future.

Year Population Growth Growth Rate
2017126,587-200-0.16%
2016126,787-472-0.37%
2015127,259-161-0.13%
2014127,420-272-0.21%
2013127,692-374-0.29%
2012128,066-123-0.10%
2011128,1892800.22%
2010127,9095,5324.52%
2000122,3772,4942.08%
1990119,8831,1931.01%
1980118,690-6,321-5.06%
1970125,0115,5274.63%
1960119,48440,69351.65%
195078,79110,95816.15%
194067,8333,7135.79%
193064,12014,09828.18%
192050,0226,33814.51%
191043,68410,07629.98%
190033,6082,6018.39%
189031,00715,555100.67%
188015,4529,662166.87%
18705,7904,990623.75%
18608000.00%

Topeka Population in 2018Source: By Dylan Edwards Kswx29 [CC BY 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons

Population by Race

Race Population
White100,346
Black or African American12,751
Two or More Races7,416
Some Other Race3,915
Asian1,797
American Indian and Alaska Native1,164
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander83

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

Topeka Population Pyramid 2018

0k0k0k0k0k Male Population0k0k0k0k0k Female Population757065605550454035302520151050

Topeka Median Age

36.9


Total

35.2


Male

38.9


Female

Lancaster Adults

There are 96,586 adults in Topeka.

Topeka Age Dependency

65.1

Age Dependency Ratio

26

Old Age Dependency Ratio

39.2

Child Dependency Ratio

Topeka Housing Indicators

Indicator Value
Median Number of Rooms (per House)
5.3
Houses Without Mortgage
11,180
Houses With Mortgage
18,481
Vacancy Rate
12.2
Median Rent
724
Median Home Value
99,400
Renter-Occupied Units
23,063
Owner-Occupied Units
29,661
Total Housing Units
60,072

This chart shows the employment and labor force participation rates in Topeka for residents over 16 years of age. The 2015 unemployment rate is 4.2% and the labor force participation rate is 63%.

Topeka Family/Household Indicators

Indicator Value
Average Household Size
2.34
Average Family Size
3.08
Total Households
52724
Married Couple Households
20914
Male Householder (no wife) Families
2459
Female Householder (no husband) Families
6338
Non Family Households
23013
Total Families
29711
Households With Own Children
13469
Unmarried Partner Households (Opposite Sex)
5.9
Unmarried Partner Households (Same Sex)
0.3

Topeka Income Distribution

Indicator Value
Under $10,000
4,002
$10,000 to $14,999
3,771
$15,000 to $24,999
6,731
$25,000 to $34,999
6,527
$35,000 to $49,999
8,112
$50,000 to $74,999
10,426
$75,000 to $99,999
5,948
$100,000 to $149,999
4,935
$150,000 to $199,999
1,224
Over $200,000
1,048

Topeka Household Income

Income

Median

Mean

Topeka

Kansas

$43,740

$53,571

$58,480

$71,975

Under 10k10k - 15k15k - 25k25k - 35k35k - 50k50k - 75k75k - 100k100k - 150k150k - 200kOver 200k00.050.10.150.2

Topeka Education Data

Topeka Educational Attainment (over 25)

Indicator Value Percentage
Less Than 9th Grade
3,2753.85%
9th to 12th Grade
6,1027.18%
High School Graduate
26,65331.36%
Some College
20,75924.42%
Associates Degree
5,2496.18%
Bachelors Degree
14,25016.77%
Graduate Degree
8,70410.24%