America’s Fastest Shrinking Cities

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11. Danville, IL
> Population growth (2010-2015):
-2.86%
> Total population: 79,282
> Per capita income: $35,009
> Unemployment rate: 9.1%

Like a number of other shrinking cities, Danville’s economy has suffered from a long-term decline of the area’s once vibrant industrial sector. With falling wages, the area has become increasingly less appealing to Americans seeking to relocate. Nearly 3,000 more people departed from Danville than arrived over the last five years. Manufacturing jobs still account for 18.2% of the workforce, considerably higher than the nationwide share of 10.3% who work in the sector.

10. Rocky Mount, NC
> Population growth (2010-2015):
-2.87%
> Total population: 148,069
> Per capita income: $35,544
> Unemployment rate: 8.0%

North Carolina is not considered part of the rust belt, but like many economically depressed areas in the rust belt, Rocky Mount is relatively dependent on its manufacturing sector. The industry employs 15.6% of area workers, well above the national proportion of 10.3% who work in the sector. The once vibrant industrial base has been eroding for many years, and dependence on manufacturing often goes hand in hand with high unemployment and population loss. In Rocky Mount, 8% of the workforce is unemployed, one of the higher jobless rates in the country.

9. Weirton-Steubenville, WV-OH
> Population growth (2010-2015):
-3.03%
> Total population: 120,512
> Per capita income: $35,150
> Unemployment rate: 9.2%

The Weirton-Steubenville area is one of only a few U.S. urban regions where the natural population decline — changes due to births and deaths — was greater than the decline attributable to migration. Over the last five years, 875 more people left than arrived to the Weirton area, a relatively small population loss due to migration. Natural events, by contrast, drove down the population by nearly 3,000 people. This could be tied to the relatively older population. Of metro area residents, 19.2% are 65 or older, one of the highest such shares in the country.