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Chicago metro area sees second straight year of population loss

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Illinois lost more residents than any other state in 2016

Curbed Chicago Flickr pool/urbsinhoro1837

According to new numbers from the United States Census Bureau, the Chicago metro region is leading the nation in population loss, Crain’s and the Tribune reports. The news comes just a year after Cook County witnessed its first population decline in nearly a decade, however, the latest report suggests that the coming years spell trouble for the state and Chicago region.

The Chicago metro area witnessed a net loss of nearly 20,000 residents last year while Illinois as a whole lost 37,500 people. While the city itself has seen an influx of younger workers over the last several years, particularly ones with well paying jobs, the region and state as a whole is losing many residents to states with warmer climates and stronger economies.

The latest numbers from the US Census Bureau reveal that for three consecutive years, Illinois has lost more residents than any other state. In addition, the Chicago area has now witnessed two years of consecutive losses, compounding the potentially damaging effects of population decline. And while the city’s economy has largely recovered from the Great Recession, a stagnating or declining population may have a negative impact on future state spending and funding.