Philadelphia population up slightly

For the first time in decades, Philadelphia is gaining residents. New U.S. Census Bureau figures show more people are living in the city than 10 years ago.

The population increase was modest … just shy of 8,500 people. But Mayor Michael Nutter said it’s historic that Philadelphia is growing.

“Something that no mayor has been able to say since 1950 when Harry Truman was president, industrial smokestacks were working overtime all over the city, when the Whiz Kids won the National League pennant and when the city’s population was over 2 million people,” said Nutter.

Nutter called the slight increase a sea change since other major cities are losing people.

“St. Louis is down 8.3 percent; Cleveland down 17.1 percent; Cincinnati, 10.4 percent; Chicago, 7.4 percent; Baltimore, 4.6 percent; and our sister city to the south, Wilmington, is down 2.5 percent,” Nutter said.

The census figures are used to determine federal funding and how congressional districts are assigned. City officials are still reviewing population breakdowns for ethnic makeup and other trends.

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