These are the 10 metro areas whose populations have the lowest shares of baby boomers.
|Metro Area||Population||Boomer Population||Boomer %|
|Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood, Texas||379,231||74,211||19.6%|
|Salt Lake City, Utah||1,130,293||238,262||21.1%|
|El Paso, Texas||751,296||160,353||21.3%|
Source: U.S. Census Bureau 2009 American Community Survey. "Boomer Population" counts include all people listed as ages 45 through 64 in the 2009 survey.
It should be noted that these numbers can be misleading. That a city has a large share of boomers does not necessarily mean that boomers are flocking there; rather, it can also mean that people from other age groups, particularly younger people, are leaving for other places, according to William Frey, demographer at the Washington, D.C.-based think tank the Brookings Institution. Likewise, he says, cities with small shares of boomers may also have large shares of young adults and youths. In the McAllen and Provo metro areas, for example, people 17 and under make up more than one third of the population, compared to barely one- quarter for the nation as a whole.
Of course, those cities that have small shares of baby boomers among their populations are not exempt from facing the challenges of impending demographic shifts. According to a 2009 study by the Brookings Institution, states in the West are projected to have the fastest growth of the population age 65 and older from 2010 to 2020. Furthermore, the study found that the metro areas surrounding McAllen, Salt Lake City, and Ogden are among the 20 cities that experienced the fastest growth of the population ages 55 to 64 in recent years. Meanwhile, many of the states represented among the cities with the most boomers--Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Tennessee, Ohio, and New York, for example--are projected to have some of the slowest growth in senior citizen populations over the next decade.