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Population

Raleigh County Currently ranks 6th overall in the state based on population size.  In recent years the population in Raleigh County has experienced some dramatic changes.  Between 1970 and 1980 the county grew by over 16,000 people only to decline again over the next decade by approximately 10,000 people. Since that time the total population has fluctuated between 76,000 and 80,000 people.  According to the most recent Census, Raleigh County's 2000 Population was approximately 79,220.

Population projection estimates prepared by the Regional Research Institute (RRI) at West Virginia University show a slight increase over the next ten to twenty years, barring any significant economic changes.

 

2000

2005  

2010 

2015 

2020 

 79,220

80,054 

81,740 

83,448 

85,256 

 

 

Population density in Raleigh County is approximately 130 persons per square mile.  This is greater than the statewide density of 75.1 persons largely due to the size of the county and the City of Beckley, which is a large municipality by West Virginia standards.

Age

Current population figures show that the majority of the population is comprised of adults between the ages of 25 and 54.  The median age of the county is 39.5 years.  There is also a significant younger population in the county with approximately 17.6 percent of the population under the age of 14.  Raleigh County also has an aging population with 25 percent of its citizens age 55 and over. 

Households

According to the Census there were an estimated 31,793 households in Raleigh County in 2000.  The average number of persons per household is 2.38, which is slightly lower than the statewide average of 2.4.  Of these households, the majority are families with a small percentage made up of people 65 and over living alone.

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