2020 Census: St. Louis City sees 20% drop in youth population


ST. LOUIS – Missouri’s population is getting older, according to the 2020 Census, as the state’s under-18 population dropped by 3.2% over the last 10 years. With few exceptions, the Missouri side of the greater St. Louis metropolitan area experienced a drop in its youth population.

Most shocking is St. Louis City, which saw a 20% reduction in the number of residents under the age of 18, compared to the 2010 Census.

Location<18 growth 2010 to 2020>18 growth 2010 to 2020
St. Louis City-20%-1.7%
St. Louis County-6.2%2.6%
Jefferson County-4.7%6.5%
St. Charles County1.9%16.1%
Lincoln County3.1%17.3%
Warren County1.8%11.8%
Franklin County-6%6.1%
Data from 2020 U.S. Census

St. Louis City’s overall population was 301,578 in 2020, down from 319,294 in 2010 and 348,189 in 2000.

Missouri’s slow population growth coincides with the larger reported trend in the Midwest and Northeast.

Overall, Missouri’s population increased by 2.77%, from 5.98 million to 6.15 million people.

The Census Bureau also reports the under-18 population declined in the last decade, mostly due to a drop in the birth rate. However, it is unclear what would account for such a drastic decline in St. Louis City’s youth population.

St. Louis City is one of the oldest jurisdictions in the state, with 82.1% of the population aged 18 or older. Only Hickory (83.7%) and Stone (83%) counties are ranked higher.

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