Chesapeake, Virginia Population 2021

249,787
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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.

Chesapeake is the third-most populous city in Virginia and the second-largest city by land area in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The population density in Chesapeake is 260% higher than the Virginia average and 660% higher than the national average.

Chesapeake Diversity and Language

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 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 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 Demographics

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

  • White: 61.06%
  • Black or African American: 30.04%
  • Two or more races: 3.99%
  • Asian: 3.15%
  • Other race: 1.52%
  • Native American: 0.17%
  • Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander: 0.06%
The current population of Chesapeake, Virginia is 249,787based on our projections of the latest US Census estimates. The US Census estimates the 2018 population at 242,359.The last official US Census in 2010 recorded the population at 222,209.

Chesapeake, Virginia Population 2021

Population by Race

Race Population Percentage
White146,54061.06%
Black or African American72,08430.04%
Two or More Races9,5723.99%
Asian7,5713.15%
Some Other Race3,6461.52%
American Indian and Alaska Native4190.17%
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander1500.06%
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Chesapeake Population By Race

Chesapeake Population Pyramid 2021

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Chesapeake Median Age

36.9


Total

35.7


Male

38.1


Female

Chesapeake Adults

There are 181,804 adults, (31,085 of whom are seniors) in Chesapeake.

Chesapeake Age Dependency

59.2

Age Dependency Ratio

20.6

Old Age Dependency Ratio

38.6

Child Dependency Ratio

Chesapeake Sex Ratio

Mujer

122,715

51.14%

Masculino

117,267

48.86%

Chesapeake Population by Age

Chesapeake Renter vs Owner Occupied by Household Type

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Chesapeake Household Types

Type Owner Renter
Married83.5%16.5%
All71.4%28.6%
Non Family61.3%38.7%
Masculino56.9%43.1%
Mujer47.9%52.1%

71.4%

Rate of Home Ownership

Chesapeake Households and Families

Type Count Average Size Owned
All84,8492.7671.4
Married46,7363.2583.5
Non Family21,6061.2461.3
Mujer12,4253.4147.9
Masculino4,0823.2156.9

3.21

Average Family Size

2.76

Average Household Size

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Chesapeake Households by Type

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Education Attained Count Percentage
Less Than 9th Grade3,5492.20%
9th to 12th Grade9,1005.65%
High School Graduate38,71524.04%
Some College40,50325.15%
Associates Degree15,7779.80%
Bachelors Degree33,40720.74%
Graduate Degree19,99112.41%
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Chesapeake Educational Attainment by Sex (over 25)

Chesapeake Educational Attainment by Race

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Race Total High School Bachelors
White96,79591,18333,823
Black47,37442,35513,288
Hispanic8,0166,7782,240
Asian5,8835,2092,913
2+ Races3,4853,3641,358
Other Race2,3031,654423
Native American35732985
Islander112112

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 49.52%.

Chesapeake Educational Attainment by Race

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Name Average Masculino Mujer
Overall$45,787$54,298$38,957
Less Than 9th Grade$22,374$26,255$17,599
High School Graduate$33,998$41,020$26,529
Some College$42,220$52,222$33,799
Bachelors Degree$54,947$72,579$46,327
Graduate Degree$75,567$100,226$60,505

$45,787

Average Earnings

$54,298

Average Male

$38,957

Average Female

Chesapeake Earnings by Educational Attainment

Chesapeake Language by Age

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Chesapeake Language

91.71% of Chesapeake residents speak only English, while 8.29% speak other languages. The non-English language spoken by the largest group is Spanish, which is spoken by 4.08% of the population.

Chesapeake Language

Chesapeake Poverty by Race

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Name Total In Poverty Poverty Rate
Black68,8709,63914.00%
White135,1987,6095.63%
Hispanic14,5682,41116.55%
Multiple9,4976336.67%
Other3,57346713.07%
Asian7,5472423.21%
Islander1321410.61%
Native400133.25%

8.57%

Overall Poverty Rate

7.16%

Male Poverty Rate

9.86%

Female Poverty Rate

Poverty in Chesapeake

The race most likely to be in poverty in Chesapeake is Hispanic, with 16.55% below the poverty level.

The race least likely to be in poverty in Chesapeake is Asian, with 3.21% below the poverty level.

The poverty rate among those that worked full-time for the past 12 months was 1.87%. Among those working part-time, it was 9.58%, and for those that did not work, the poverty rate was 12.58%.

Chesapeake Poverty

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Name Poverty
Less Than 9th Grade18.60%
High School9.07%
Some College5.75%
Bachelors or Greater1.86%

Chesapeake Poverty Rate by Education

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Name Poverty
Male Unemployed19.45%
Female Unemployed12.85%
Female Employed5.08%
Male Employed2.81%

Chesapeake Poverty Rate by Employment Status and Sex

Chesapeake Income by Household Type

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Name Median Mean
Households$78,640$97,038
Families$90,552$108,867
Married Families$106,568$124,577
Non Families$46,054$57,380
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Income by Household Type

Chesapeake Marital Status

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Marriage Rates

52.2%

Overall Marriage Rate

53.8%

Male Marriage Rate

50.7%

Female Marriage Rate

Chesapeake Married by Age and Sex

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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 35-44.

Chesapeake Marital Status by Race

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Chesapeake Marital Status

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26,832

Number of Veterans

21,847

Male Veterans

4,985

Female Veterans

War Veterans
First Gulf War11,175
Second Gulf War10,497
Vietnam6,457
Korea813
World War II357

Chesapeake Veterans by War

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Age Group Veterans
35 to 5410,560
55 to 645,697
65 to 744,288
18 to 343,330
75+2,957

Chesapeake Veterans by Age

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Name Veterans % of Total
White17,28816.09%
Black7,96214.91%
Hispanic1,10612.47%
2+ Races65015.14%
Other Race41115.55%
Asian4006.54%
Native American8023.67%
Islander4136.61%

Chesapeake Veterans by Race

Chesapeake Veterans by Education

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3.19%

Veteran Poverty Rate

18.54%

Veteran Disability Rate

Chesapeake Veterans by Education

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65.9%

Labor Force Participation

59%

Employment Rate

4.7%

Unemployment Rate

Chesapeake Employment by Age

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Chesapeake Employment by Race

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Chesapeake Employment by Education

Origin of Non-Citizens

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

Origin of Naturalized Citizens

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51.68%

Born in Chesapeake

94.11%

Native Born

5.89%

Foreign Born

2.32%

Non Citizen

3.57%

Naturalized

Place of Birth

94.11% of Chesapeake residents were born in the United States, with 51.68% having been born in Virginia. 2.32% of residents are not US citizens. Of those not born in the United States, the largest percentage are from Latin America.

Chesapeake Place of Birth

Year Population Growth Annual Growth Rate
2021249,7872,4761.00%
2020247,3112,4761.01%
2019244,8352,4761.02%
2018242,3592,2160.92%
2017240,1432,6791.13%
2016237,4642,3531.00%
2015235,1111,7510.75%
2014233,3603,0331.32%
2013230,3272,2360.98%
2012228,0912,7301.21%
2011225,3611,8050.81%
2010223,55624,3721.16%
2000199,18447,2082.74%
1990151,97637,4902.87%
1980114,48624,9062.48%
197089,5800.00%

Chesapeake Population by Year