Every year, an estimated 89 residents of Hartford County pull up stakes and head for uber-hip King County in Washington, home of Seattle and Starbucks and Nirvana. But the Census Bureau says even more people – 110 – move in the opposite direction, leaving the Seattle area in favor of Hartford County, home of, you know, the New Britain busway and at least one Cheesecake Factory.
That’s one of the intriguing tidbits found in a new release of Census data showing migration in and out of the nation’s 3,000 counties. Hartford County attracts about 17,500 people a year from other states, while giving up about 20,500. And as the map below shows, there are stories in the patterns of migration. Red areas indicate counties to which Hartford loses residents – more people move out of the Hartford area to live in those counties than relocate to Hartford from there. Blue areas show counties with a net migration in favor of Hartford County. Counties shaded dark red and dark blue indicate a net inbound or outbound migration of more than 100 residents a year.
Not surprisingly, Hartford County loses residents to more than 20 counties in Florida. Collier County, home of Naples, Fla., attracts an average of 130 Hartford County residents each year, while only eight people are lured from Collier County to Hartford.
But for eight other Florida counties, Hartford enjoys a net increase in population. For example, an average of ten people move every year from Hartford County to Osceola County, which includes the southern tip of the Disney World complex. But an estimated 83 people move the other way.
Excluding moves within Connecticut, the most lopsided migrations involve Kings County, N.Y. – which is Brooklyn – where each year Hartford County loses 48 residents, but gains 603; and Wake County, N.C. – home of Raleigh – which attracts 355 Hartford County residents every year, while giving up only 50 who move north.
Click the image below for a larger, interactive map of migration in and out of Hartford County. And click here to access the “Census Flows Mapper” to view data for any U.S. county, including the ability to parse the numbers by age, sex, race and ethnicity.