The Central Vermont Region consists of twenty-three communities throughout all of Washington County and parts of Orange County. Click here to view a map of the Region. This Regional Data Profile will serve as a starting point for the Regional Plan update to assess the current state of the Region and the changes that have been occurring. The profile is broken down into two main sections (Population and Housing) and individual sections of the full Regional Data Profile are available for download at the links below.
Much of the data in this profile is compiled at the Regional scale as well as at the town level. Certain trends and indicators are also compared to the State of Vermont as well as the United States. The information is gathered from the most current available data from the U.S. Census Bureau and other agencies. Within each section of the plan there will be a more detailed analysis based on the various topics of The Plan. If you are interested in accessing any of the below data in excel format for any individual or set of the 23 communities within the Region, please contact Stephanie Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The charts and maps below highlight key overall trends:
Central Vermont Regional Population, 1960-2010
From the 2010 Census, the population of the region was just over 65,000 people (Figure 1). Historically, the population has been on a steady upward trend from 50,417 in 1960 until 2000, where regional population growth has slowed
Comparative Population Growth Rate vs. Vermont and the U.S., 1960-2010
Compared to the consistent upward trend of the United States (using 1960 population as a baseline), both the State of Vermont and the Central Vermont Region have seen a small leveling off in their rising population trend.
While this trend may seem to imply that the Region is not undergoing a significant change in population, the population size within the towns has been shifting as people move into the countryside. The 2008 Regional Plan surmised that the reasons for shifting land use and habitation patterns include the emergence of commuter lifestyles, a population seeking rural environs, the growth of resort areas and second home development. Over the past ten years, while population grew only 2.8%, the number of housing units grew 8.6%.
Housing Density Maps, 1999 and 2013
These maps display residential growth patterns within the region using 1999 and 2013 as benchmarks. Areas of varying residential densities were determined using e-911 points.
As of the 2010 U.S. Census, the largest population centers within the Region in descending order were Barre City, Barre Town, Montpelier, Northfield and Waterbury—each with populations over 5,000). The smallest towns, with populations under 1,000, were Worcester, Woodbury and Roxbury.
Change in Population Size by Town, 2000-2010
The above map illustrates the population change within each town from 2000-2010. The city centers of Barre and Montpelier decreased in population, with 2010 populations of 9,052 and 7,855 respectively. Contrary to this decline, the majority of the towns saw an increase in population, including the smallest towns of Worcester, Woodbury and Roxbury. Northfield and Barre Town saw the greatest increase in the total number of residents over the past decade, with 322 and 416 additional residents respectively.
Central Vermont Regional Population Change by Age Group, 2000-2010
As discussed in the general population trends, there was an increase in population between 2000 and 2010. The largest population increases, however, were in the 55 to 59 age range and the 60 to 64 age range, while the most significant change was the decline in residents age 35 to 44. Like the rest of Vermont and much of the country as a whole, Central Vermont should be planning for an aging population.
Comparative Household Size 1990, 2000 and 2010
Out of a total population of 65,034 people in the Central Vermont Region in 2010, there were 27,268 total households. This represents an average household size of 2.38 people and a significant decrease from the average household size of 2.64 in 1990. This is representative of statewide trends, and can be attributed to many factors including smaller families, an aging population and higher divorce rates.
Housing Units by Percentage of Household Income Spend on Housing, 2011
Housing affordability remains a critical issue within the Region. The increasing gap between what families are forced to pay for housing costs and what their incomes afford has several negative side effects on quality of life and the local economy.
The above chart displays the percent of households spending greater than 30% of Household Income on Housing by homeowner and rental populations within each town. In six communities, this statistic includes over half of the rental population.