Boom!

This is just how much Dallas-Fort Worth's population exploded in the last decade

This is just how much DFW's population exploded in the last decade

Dallas skyline
New residents are zooming into Dallas all the time. Photo by Joe Daniel Price/Getty Images

As anyone who lives here knows, the population of Dallas-Fort Worth keeps swelling.

New figures from the U.S. Census Bureau put that explosive growth into clearer perspective. Data from the 2020 Census released August 12 shows Dallas-Fort Worth is the country’s fourth largest metro area, with 7,637,387 residents counted. It had been the country's sixth largest metro area following the 2010 Census (6,366,542 residents).

DFW was one of only three U.S. metro areas to gain at least 1.2 million residents over the decade. Houston and New York City were the second and third.

All four of Texas' major metros moved up the ranks of the biggest U.S. regions from 2010 to 2020.

Austin — ranked 37th most populous metro in 2010 — now is the 28th largest, with 2,283,371 residents, surpassing Las Vegas (ranked 29th, with 2,265,461 residents) and inching closer to 27th-ranked Pittsburgh (2,370,930 residents).

Among 50 largest U.S. metro areas, Austin notched the biggest jump in population from 2010 to 2020 (33 percent), with Houston at No. 5 (20.3 percent), Dallas-Fort Worth at No. 6 (20 percent), and San Antonio at No. 7 (19.4 percent). 

Houston is now the the country's fifth largest metro area, with 7,122,240 residents (No. 8 in 2010), and San Antonio ranks 24th, with 2,558,143 residents (No. 26 in 2010).

Other highlights of the Census 2020 data include:

  • Fort Worth ranked as the fastest-growing big city in Texas between 2010 and 2020 (24 percent), followed by Austin (21.7 percent), Houston (9.8 percent), Dallas (8.9 percent), and San Antonio (8.1 percent).
  • Two of the five U.S. counties that picked up at least 300,000 residents between 2010 and 2020 are in Texas — Harris County (638,686) and Tarrant County (301,606).

“Many counties within metro areas saw growth [from 2010 to 2020], especially those in the South and West. However, as we’ve been seeing in our annual population estimates, our nation is growing slower than it used to,” Marc Perry, senior demographer at the Census Bureau, says in a news release.