Norfolk, Virginia Population 2021

241,056
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Norfolk is a city located in Virginia Beach City County Virginia. With a 2020 population of 241,056, it is the 3rd largest city in Virginia (after Virginia Beach and Chesapeake) and the 93rd largest city in the United States . Norfolk is currently declining at a rate of -0.35% annually and its population has decreased by -0.72% since the most recent census, which recorded a population of 242,803 in 2010. Norfolk reached it's highest population of 307,951 in 1970. Spanning over 96 miles, Norfolk has a population density of 4,525 people per square mile.

The average household income in Norfolk is $72,315 with a poverty rate of 18.75%. The median rental costs in recent years comes to $1,059 per month, and the median house value is $206,700. The median age in Norfolk is 30.7 years, 29 years for males, and 33 years for females.

Norfolk is part of the Hampton Roads metropolitan area which is made up of a total of nine cities and seven counties. It is one of the oldest cities in the region, and it is a center of history, culture, and finance.

Norfolk Population Statistics

The total crime in Norfolk falls above the national average, although it does seem to be improving. The city’s top employer is the US Department of Defense. Sentara Healthcare, Norfolk City Public Schools, the City of Norfolk and Old Dominion University round out the top five employers in Norfolk.

Norfolk Population Growth

The city of Norfolk has seen its share of ups and downs throughout the years when it comes to population. For many years, Norfolk saw steady growth, more than doubling its population between 1790 and 1800. The city reached a population of more than 100,000 at the time of the 1920 census and rose to more than 200,000 in 1950. It reached its peak in 1970 with more than 307,000 residents. However, the population began to decline after this, dropping to 234,403 in 2000 before rising again to 242,803 in 2010. The community seems to be on the upswing still, growing 1% between the 2010 census and estimates taken in 2016.

The city of Norfolk is one of the oldest cities in the Hampton Roads metro area. It was officially founded in 1682. Before that, it was jurisdiction under the Elizabeth Cittie incorporation. It was later incorporated in 1705. By the end of the century, it was considered the most prosperous city in the state because of its role as a port for exporting goods to the British Isles and other areas around the world. In 1776 during the Revolutionary War, the city was attacked for more than eight hours, destroying nearly two-thirds of the city’s buildings. The city began to rebuild but faced another challenge following a fire in 1804.

Like other areas in the south, Norfolk was affected by a recession in 1820 that led to the migration of many residents. The population was affected again in the mid-1800s with an outbreak of yellow fever that killed many people, and one-third of the residents left the city to avoid the illness. Neighboring cities and the state of New York banned residents from Norfolk as the epidemic continued to spread, primarily because of sanitation issues and mosquitoes. The cooler weather finally brought some relief, although over 3,000 people were dead after it all.

In the early 1900s, the Naval Air Station Hampton Roads was erected ahead of World War I. The Virginian Railway was also part of the city during this period. The city continued its expansion through annexation, with its current borders finally established in the 1980s. After World War II, highways, bridges, and tunnels furthered the city’s development. This led to the construction of more residential housing in the suburbs. This ultimately led to a decline in population as middle-class white residents moved out of the city and into the suburbs. To draw in more residents, the city built malls and shopping centers in the 1960s and 1970s. In the 1980s, revitalization efforts continued with the construction of the Waterside marketplace. The city continued its expansion to include a stadium, restaurants and retail centers. The downtown area has brought in revenues that will be used to revitalize other neighborhoods in Norfolk.

Today, the city is home to the Norfolk Southern Railway headquarters, as well as the Maersk Line headquarters. It boasts many attractions that appeal to residents and tourists, including the beaches of Chesapeake Bay.

Norfolk Demographics

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

  • White: 46.97%
  • Black or African American: 41.15%
  • Two or more races: 4.70%
  • Asian: 3.69%
  • Other race: 3.04%
  • Native American: 0.38%
  • Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander: 0.07%
The current population of Norfolk, Virginia is 241,056 based on our projections of the latest US Census estimates. The US Census estimates the 2018 population at 243,585.The last official US Census in 2010 recorded the population at 242,803.

Norfolk, Virginia Population 2021

2019 and 2020 population is estimated by projecting the raw 2018 numbers.

Year Population Growth Growth Rate
20211,779,2805,1900.29%
20201,774,0905,1900.29%
20191,768,9005,1900.29%
20181,763,7102,7800.16%
20171,760,9302,1700.12%
20161,758,7602,4200.14%
20151,756,3405,4000.31%
20141,750,9409,5700.55%
20131,741,3707,2500.42%
20121,734,12010,9100.63%
20111,723,2106,1700.36%
20101,717,0400.00%

Norfolk Metro Area Population by Year

Population by Race

Race Population Percentage
White114,89046.97%
Black or African American100,64941.15%
Two or More Races11,4964.70%
Asian9,0293.69%
Some Other Race7,4313.04%
American Indian and Alaska Native9380.38%
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander1680.07%
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Norfolk Population by Race

Norfolk Population Pyramid $2021

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Norfolk Median Age

30.7


Total

29


Male

33


Female

Norfolk Adults

There are 196,397 adults, (26,570 of whom are seniors) in Norfolk.

Norfolk Age Dependency

44

Age Dependency Ratio

15.6

Old Age Dependency Ratio

28.4

Child Dependency Ratio

Norfolk Sex Ratio

Female

116,878

47.78%

Male

127,723

52.22%

Norfolk Population by Age

Norfolk Renter vs Owner Occupied by Household Type

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Norfolk Household Types

Type Owner Renter
Married64.1%35.9%
All43.4%56.6%
Male36.2%63.8%
Non Family33.3%66.7%
Female28.5%71.5%

43.4%

Rate of Home Ownership

Norfolk Households and Families

Type Count Average Size Owned
All88,3532.4743.4
Non Family37,8661.3833.3
Married30,9163.1864.1
Female15,4363.528.5
Male4,1353.2436.2

3.18

Average Family Size

2.47

Average Household Size

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Norfolk Households by Type

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Education Attained Count Percentage
Less Than 9th Grade4,9073.21%
9th to 12th Grade13,4838.82%
High School Graduate39,08025.57%
Some College38,39625.12%
Associates Degree12,9048.44%
Bachelors Degree27,11717.74%
Graduate Degree16,94311.09%
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Norfolk Educational Attainment by Sex (over 25)

Norfolk Educational Attainment by Race

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Race Total High School Bachelors
White72,62867,96528,331
Black60,35049,5519,357
Hispanic9,8077,8362,417
Asian6,3845,8092,879
2+ Races4,2133,8321,114
Other Race4,1542,747721
Native American600567231
Islander737321

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 45.10%.

Norfolk Educational Attainment by Race

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Name Average Male Female
Overall$35,236$42,557$30,431
Less Than 9th Grade$22,544$25,727$17,257
High School Graduate$28,344$31,905$24,796
Some College$32,024$40,207$27,828
Bachelors Degree$46,284$54,043$39,794
Graduate Degree$64,693$77,843$55,352

$35,236

Average Earnings

$42,557

Average Male

$30,431

Average Female

Norfolk Earnings by Educational Attainment

Norfolk Language by Age

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Norfolk Language

89.60% of Norfolk residents speak only English, while 10.40% speak other languages. The non-English language spoken by the largest group is Spanish, which is spoken by 4.98% of the population.

Norfolk Language

Norfolk Poverty by Race

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Name Total In Poverty Poverty Rate
Black90,96424,54826.99%
White94,58510,78511.40%
Hispanic16,6583,32219.94%
Multiple10,0931,86618.49%
Other6,7551,42221.05%
Asian8,3491,08913.04%
Native84311313.40%
Islander1271310.24%

18.75%

Overall Poverty Rate

16.87%

Male Poverty Rate

20.64%

Female Poverty Rate

Poverty in Norfolk

The race most likely to be in poverty in Norfolk is Black, with 26.99% below the poverty level.

The race least likely to be in poverty in Norfolk is Islander, with 10.24% below the poverty level.

The poverty rate among those that worked full-time for the past 12 months was 3.85%. Among those working part-time, it was 26.52%, and for those that did not work, the poverty rate was 28.11%.

Norfolk Poverty

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Name Poverty
Less Than 9th Grade27.59%
High School18.06%
Some College13.60%
Bachelors or Greater5.79%

Norfolk Poverty Rate by Education

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Rate Poverty
Female Unemployed40.02%
Male Unemployed33.45%
Female Employed12.36%
Male Employed8.53%

Norfolk Poverty Rate by Employment Status and Sex

Norfolk Income by Household Type

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Name Median Mean
Households$51,590$72,315
Families$62,016$84,853
Married Families$82,897$107,018
Non Families$37,094$53,158
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Income by Household Type

Norfolk Marital Status

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Marriage Rates

34.9%

Overall Marriage Rate

35.1%

Male Marriage Rate

34.7%

Female Marriage Rate

Norfolk Married by Age and Sex

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Norfolk Marriage

The age group where males are most likely to be married is 35-44, while the female age group most likely to be married is 35-44.

Norfolk Marital Status by Race

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Norfolk Marital Status

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26,924

Number of Veterans

22,439

Male Veterans

4,485

Female Veterans

War Veterans
Second Gulf War13,225
First Gulf War9,298
Vietnam5,421
Korea984
World War II365

Norfolk Veterans by War

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Age Group Veterans
35 to 548,632
18 to 346,872
55 to 645,153
65 to 743,544
75+2,723

Norfolk Veterans by Age

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Name Veterans % of Total
White15,80419.71%
Black9,02112.48%
Hispanic1,82716.69%
2+ Races94818.62%
Asian6909.94%
Other Race3497.56%
Native American9815.96%
Islander1413.86%

Norfolk Veterans by Race

Norfolk Veterans by Education

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9.44%

Veteran Poverty Rate

18.30%

Veteran Disability Rate

Norfolk Veterans by Education

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69.7%

Labor Force Participation

52.2%

Employment Rate

7.6%

Unemployment Rate

Norfolk Employment by Age

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Norfolk Employment by Race

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Norfolk 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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49.42%

Born in Norfolk

92.76%

Native Born

7.24%

Foreign Born

3.43%

Non Citizen

3.81%

Naturalized

Place of Birth

92.76% of Norfolk residents were born in the United States, with 49.42% having been born in Virginia. 3.43% of residents are not US citizens. Of those not born in the United States, the largest percentage are from Latin America.

Norfolk Place of Birth

Year Population Growth Annual Growth Rate
2021241,056-843-0.35%
2020241,899-843-0.35%
2019242,742-843-0.35%
2018243,585-958-0.39%
2017244,543-1,137-0.46%
2016245,680-777-0.32%
2015246,457-119-0.05%
2014246,5761,1080.45%
2013245,468-681-0.28%
2012246,1492,4941.02%
2011243,6556560.27%
2010242,9998,5960.36%
2000234,403-26,826-1.08%
1990261,229-5,750-0.22%
1980266,979-40,972-1.42%
1970307,9513,0820.10%
1960304,86991,3563.63%
1950213,51369,1813.99%
1940144,33214,6221.07%
1930129,71013,9331.14%
1920115,77748,3255.55%
191067,45220,8283.76%
190046,62411,7532.95%
189034,87112,9054.73%
188021,9662,7371.34%
187019,2294,6092.78%
186014,6202940.20%
185014,3263,4062.75%
184010,9201,1061.07%
18309,8141,3361.47%
18208,478-715-0.81%
18109,1932,2672.87%
18006,9263,9678.88%
17902,9590.00%

Norfolk Population by Year