Map Monday: Population Growth in Minnesota Counties

As a follow-up to Friday’s Chart of the Day showing a scatterplot of Minnesota population change versus population level, here is a map showing that population change spatially (i.e. geographically):

2010 to 2015 population change (in percentage) by county. Map by the author.

2010 to 2015 population change (in percentage) by county. Map by the author.

As discussed in the Friday thread, the largest counties in the state tended to grow while the smallest counties tended to shrink. While the largest percentage gains are generally in and around the Twin Cities metro area, they are by no means limited to the Twin Cities, with significant gains noted in Olmsted (Rochester) and Clay (Moorhead) Counties.

Meanwhile, the largest percentage losses tended to be clusered around southern and western Minnesota. These counties are by and large agricultural counties with an aging population and little else in the way of economic opportunity.

There are a few outliers as well. Cook and Mahnomen Counties are two of the least populated counties in the state (#83 and #81 respectively), yet both saw gains. Meanwhile, St. Louis County, which comprises of Duluth and much of the Iron Range, is the 6th most populated county in the state yet its change could be considered a rounding error (effectively zero). Winona County is also a large populated county (by Minnesota standards, sitting at #19), but saw a drop in population.

What do you see in the map?

Adam Froehlig

About Adam Froehlig

Adam Froehlig, aka "Froggie", is a Minneapolis native who grew up studying the state's highways and bicycling the Minneapolis parkways and beyond. A retired US Navy sailor who worked as a meteorologist and GIS analyst, he is now losing himself among the hills and dirt roads of northern Vermont. He occasionally blogs at Just Up The Hill.