Population Density Soars: New York City Leads with 94 of the 100 Most Densely Populated Census Tracts by 2026

TUESDAY, MAR 07, 2023

Think your neighborhood is becoming crowded? By 2026, 94 of the 100 most-densely populated Census tracts will be in New York City, according to a TractIQ analysis of data compiled by Easy Analytics Software Inc. A Census tract often approximates neighborhood boundaries and typically contains between 1,200 and 8,000 people.

Despite New York City’s dense neighborhoods, a Cook County, Ill., tract takes the No. 1 spot for the most-densely populated area in the nation, with 495,006 people per square mile – even after a slight drop from the current 498,127 people per square mile. The tract, about halfway between Chicago and Evanston, is more than twice as dense as the No. 2 neighborhood in Queens County, N.Y., which claims 204,446 people per square mile.

The other four non-New York City tracts in the top 100 include three in San Francisco (173,718; 154,327; and 139,424); one in Mercer County, N.J. (127,188), and the 99th-ranked tract in Suffolk County, Mass. (123,793). By comparison, the least-dense state is Wyoming, with 6 people per square mile; New Jersey, among the most dense states, has more than 1,200 people per square mile.

Use TractIQ’s customizable mapping and reporting tools to look at population density when considering how to boost your business.


Population Density by State., 2021. Click here to explore further.

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Author: Frank Bass