The D.C. metro area is expected to experience 7.4% population growth in the next 4 years, and 16% population growth by 2020, according to projections made by American City Business Journals. This equates to 955,517 new residents by 2025, which would swell the area to over 7 million residents total.
Economist Stephen Fuller calls this estimate “aggressive” and predicts somewhat smaller growth, but still notes that the coming population increase will strain the Greater Washington area’s weakest sectors, particularly affordable housing. (Housing costs in the area have historically grown by 7% each year, but wages have only grown 3% by the same measure.)
The additional people would also burden existing public infrastructure such as schools, fire and water services and public safety. Local governments would reap additional tax revenue from residents, but the increase may also force cities and counties to raise taxes or scrounge elsewhere for additional sources of revenue, Rossi said.