Waco, Texas Population 2022

143,286
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Waco is a city located in McLennan County Texas. Waco has a 2020 population of 143,286. It is also the county seat of McLennan County. Waco is currently growing at a rate of 0.95% annually and its population has increased by 14.28% since the most recent census, which recorded a population of 125,377 in 2010.

The average household income in Waco is $59,319 with a poverty rate of 25.35%. The median rental costs in recent years comes to $879 per month, and the median house value is $133,500. The median age in Waco is 28.7 years, 27.4 years for males, and 30.1 years for females.

Waco is a city located in the state of Texas, and it is the county seat of McLennan County. Waco marks the halfway point between the larger cities of Dallas and Austin. Recent estimates show that the population of this city – which is dubbed the “Heart of Texas” -- is {pop}.

Waco Population Statistics

The city’s schools and higher education institutions drive the economy and employ many of Waco’s residents. The top employers are Baylor University, Waco Independent School District, Providence Health Center, L3 Technologies, and Baylor Scott & White Health.

Waco Population Growth

At the time of almost every census, Waco has shown growth in its population. The city’s population grew to over 50,000 at the time of the 1930 census, then increased to over 100,000 in 1990. The city’s population has continued to grow at a slow but steady rate over the last two polls taken during 2000 and 2010. Recent estimates show that the population has grown over 7% since the last census, and Waco is heading toward 150,000 residents. Based on past trends, the city will no doubt hit its next milestone in the years ahead.

Waco, like many other cities in the United States, was originally inhabited by indigenous tribes, primarily the Wichita tribe, also known as the Waco. Thomas Duke explored the area during the 1820s after the tribes fought off European settlers. A treaty was signed with the people in 1825, but the tribe was eventually forced off of the land and settled near what is now Fort Worth. The first settler in the area is noted as Neil McLennan in 1838. The first city block was designed in 1849, and later that year, the first home was constructed. Though the name Lamartine was proposed, the area was instead called Waco Village after the tribe that had lived there before.

During the next decade, the citizens of Waco aimed to build a bridge over the Brazos River. To take on the project, the Waco Bridge Company was formed. The company created the brick Waco Suspension Bridge, a 475-foot bridge that was finished in 1870. The construction of the bridge led to a boost in the economy, as a toll was required to pass. The population then began to grow as more immigrants made their way over. The bridge still stands today and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

The city was thriving, and the population was growing through the 19th century. Other notable things that occurred during this period were the invention of Dr. Pepper in 1885 and the relocation of Baylor University from Independence to Waco. Toward the end of the 1800s, Waco published the Iconoclast newspaper, which was very successful. The city, which had an economy centered on agriculture, built a fair and exhibition center, which drew in more than eight million attendees. Unfortunately, the original building burned in a fire in the early 1900s, and the rebuilt structure was torn down following the Great Depression.

An odd event in Waco was the “Crash” of 1896. This was meant to be entertaining for citizens and featured two trains that were going to crash head-on. Unfortunately, this stunt resulted in the deaths and injuries of multiple people when the boilers exploded.

This wasn’t the only bad thing to happen in Waco. The Waco Horror became national news after a young teenager was tortured and burned in the town square after citizens took matters into their own hands following the conviction of the teenager, who had been accused of killing a white woman. After this incident, the city worked to improve protections for African Americans.

Waco Army Air Field was opened in 1942, later becoming Connally Air Force Base, then James Connally Air Force Base. Though it closed in the 1960s, it is now the site of the Texas State Technical College. Waco’s airfield, however, is still open today and is the TSTC Waco Airport.

The next few decades saw more highs and lows for the city. A tornado killed hundreds in the 1950s and remains one of the deadliest tornados in US and state history. In the 1970s, bones were found that were dated to be over 68,000 years old and are thought to have belonged to a mammoth. Other animal remains were also found at the site.

Waco was once the home of the White House Press Center. In recent years, the city has constructed a riverwalk, which is one of its many attractions. Other attractions include museums, the Texas Sports Hall of Fame, parks, and the Dr. Pepper Museum. The city is also home to many professional sports teams.

Waco Demographics

According to the most recent ACS, the racial composition of Wacowas:

  • White: 66.89%
  • Black or African American: 20.65%
  • Two or more races: 6.42%
  • Other race: 3.36%
  • Asian: 2.23%
  • Native American: 0.38%
  • Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander: 0.07%
The current population of Waco, Texas is 143,286 based on our projections of the latest US Census estimates. The US Census estimates the 2018 population at 143,286.The last official US Census in 2010 recorded the population at 125,377.

Waco, Texas Population 2022

2021 and 2022 population is estimated by projecting the 2019 numbers.

Year Population Growth Growth Rate
2010253,8080.00%
2011255,7001,8920.74%
2012256,9381,2380.48%
2013258,6851,7470.68%
2014260,3761,6910.65%
2015262,6602,2840.87%
2016264,8292,1690.82%
2017268,9714,1421.54%
2018271,4272,4560.90%
2019273,9202,4930.91%
2020276,4132,4930.90%
2021278,9062,4930.89%

Waco Metro Area Population by Year

Population by Race

Race Population Percentage
White92,16266.89%
Black or African American28,44720.65%
American Indian and Alaska Native5170.38%
Asian3,0792.23%
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander1000.07%
Some Other Race4,6313.36%
Two or More Races8,8436.42%
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Waco Population by Race

Waco Population Pyramid 2022

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Waco Median Age

28.9


Total

27.5


Male

30.4


Female

Waco Adults

There are 104,994 adults, (17,246 of whom are seniors) in Waco.

Waco Age Dependency

Age Dependency Ratio

19.7

Old Age Dependency Ratio

37.4

Child Dependency Ratio

Waco Sex Ratio

Female

71,052

51.57%

Male

66,727

48.43%

Waco Population by Age

Waco Renter vs Owner Occupied by Household Type

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Waco Household Types

Type Owner Renter
Married70.8%29.2%
All47%53%
Male46.7%53.3%
Female38.3%61.7%
Non Family30.1%69.9%

47.0%

Rate of Home Ownership

Waco Households and Families

Type Count Average Size Owned
All50,1082.5847
Married18,2353.3970.8
Male2,1933.1446.7
Female8,5863.4538.3
Non Family21,0941.4630.1

3.31

Average Family Size

2.58

Average Household Size

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Waco Households by Type

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Education Attained Count Percentage
Less Than 9th Grade5,4817.06%
9th to 12th Grade8,26910.65%
High School Graduate20,76326.74%
Some College16,84221.69%
Associates Degree6,5468.43%
Bachelors Degree12,28515.82%
Graduate Degree7,4709.62%
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Waco Educational Attainment by Sex (over 25)

Waco Educational Attainment by Race

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Race Total High School Bachelors
Asian1,4601,245955
White37,04935,04114,627
2+ Races4,0242,935522
Black16,20513,7231,700
Hispanic22,05013,0562,128
Native American22816721
Other Race2,5901,718229
Islander6029

The highest rate of high school graduation is among white people with a rate of 94.58%.

The highest rate of bachelors degrees is among asian people with a rate of 65.41%.

Waco Educational Attainment by Race

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Name Average Male Female
Overall$31,801$35,210$28,526
Less Than 9th Grade$21,992$26,806$16,778
High School Graduate$25,910$31,194$19,667
Some College$31,659$34,582$29,944
Bachelors Degree$47,995$55,898$41,539
Graduate Degree$62,037$81,692$51,401

$31,801

Average Earnings

$35,210

Average Male

$28,526

Average Female

Waco Earnings by Educational Attainment

Waco Language by Age

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Waco Language

75.38% of Waco residents speak only English, while 24.62% speak other languages. The non-English language spoken by the largest group is Spanish, which is spoken by 21.74% of the population.

Waco Language

Waco Poverty by Race

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Name Total In Poverty Poverty Rate
Native47632367.86%
Black26,85810,15337.80%
Hispanic42,10710,86725.81%
Asian2,48249920.10%
White55,48810,53918.99%
Other1,240NaN%
Multiple8,4781,53718.13%

25.35%

Overall Poverty Rate

23.98%

Male Poverty Rate

26.61%

Female Poverty Rate

Poverty in Waco

The race most likely to be in poverty in Waco is Native, with 67.86% below the poverty level.

The race least likely to be in poverty in Waco is Multiple, with 18.13% below the poverty level.

The poverty rate among those that worked full-time for the past 12 months was 6.37%. Among those working part-time, it was 38.24%, and for those that did not work, the poverty rate was 35.51%.

Waco Poverty

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Name Poverty
Less Than 9th Grade29.88%
High School18.96%
Some College14.12%
Bachelors or Greater5.89%

Waco Poverty Rate by Education

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Rate Poverty
Male Employed14.67%
Male Unemployed36.02%
Female Employed16.94%
Female Unemployed52.27%

Waco Poverty Rate by Employment Status and Sex

Waco Income by Household Type

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Name Median Mean
Households$40,349$60,874
Families$54,645$77,258
Married Families$76,483$99,665
Non Families$24,003$35,879
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Income by Household Type

Waco Marital Status

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Marriage Rates

36.3%

Overall Marriage Rate

39.2%

Male Marriage Rate

33.7%

Female Marriage Rate

Waco Married by Age and Sex

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Waco Marriage

The age group where males are most likely to be married is Over 65, while the female age group most likely to be married is 55-64.

Waco Marital Status by Race

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Waco Marital Status

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6,186

Number of Veterans

Male Veterans

Female Veterans

War Veterans
Second Gulf War1,390
First Gulf War1,381
Vietnam1,805
Korea456
World War II211

Waco Veterans by War

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Age Group Veterans
18 to 34689
35 to 541,572
55 to 641,465
65 to 741,137
75+1,323

Waco Veterans by Age

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Name Veterans % of Total
White4,6586.44%
Black1,2956.18%
Native American10.30%
Other Race1163.51%
2+ Races1162.13%
Hispanic9043.13%

Waco Veterans by Race

Waco Veterans by Education

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7.64%

Veteran Poverty Rate

34.05%

Veteran Disability Rate

Waco Veterans by Education

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60%

Labor Force Participation

57.2%

Employment Rate

4.6%

Unemployment Rate

Waco Employment by Age

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Waco Employment by Race

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Waco 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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68.60%

Born in Waco

89.24%

Native Born

10.76%

Foreign Born

7.83%

Non Citizen

2.92%

Naturalized

Place of Birth

89.24% of Waco residents were born in the United States, with 68.60% having been born in Texas. 7.83% of residents are not US citizens. Of those not born in the United States, the largest percentage are from Latin America.

Waco Place of Birth

Note: 2021 and 2022 data is projected
Year Population Growth Annual Growth Rate
18703,0080.00%
18807,2954,2879.26%
189014,4457,1507.07%
190020,6866,2413.66%
191026,4255,7392.48%
192038,50012,0753.84%
193052,84814,3483.22%
194055,9823,1340.58%
195084,70628,7244.23%
196097,80813,1021.45%
197095,326-2,482-0.26%
1980101,2615,9350.61%
1990103,5902,3290.23%
2000113,72610,1360.94%
2010125,37711,6510.98%
2011126,4431,0660.85%
2012127,4941,0510.83%
2013129,0111,5171.19%
2014129,8608490.66%
2015131,8011,9411.49%
2016133,4211,6201.23%
2017136,9393,5182.64%
2018137,8869470.69%
2019139,2361,3500.98%
2020140,5861,3500.97%
2021141,9361,3500.96%
2022143,2861,3500.95%

Waco Population by Year