The PULSE is a collection of key indicators of the vitality of St. Louis County. The St. Louis County Department of Planning collects and tracks this information to inform planning and policy. The information you see here represents the demographic drivers that were identified by community stakeholders as being key to the current and future planning of St. Louis County. These drivers of change have served as the lens through which new strategies for St. Louis County have been developed over the last year for the upcoming strategic plan, Imagining Tomorrow for St. Louis County.

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The demographic profile of St. Louis County is changing.

We are an aging county and yet the largest generation of youth is just coming up.

The Gen Yers, or Millennials, (born between 1980 and 2000; now between the ages of 13 and 33) currently make up the single highest percentage of the County’s generations. Yet, when added together, the three generations of older adults (the Greatest Generation, the Silent Generation, and the Baby Boomers) represent the largest demographic group in the County and this number will continue to increase as people live longer and fewer babies are born.

The Millennials and the Baby Boomers alone currently account for 60% of St. Louis County’s  population. Together, the preferences of these two groups will largely influence future housing, transportation, retail, and service delivery. The oldest Baby Boomers, who began turning 65 in 2011, are retiring or planning for retirement and deciding whether they will stay in their current house, downsize, or move to a new community altogether. Studies show that many lifestyle preferences of the Millennials and Baby Boomers overlap, such as smaller housing that is close to amenities and reduces the necessity of traveling by car. One of the questions we must ask ourselves is, Are we prepared to adapt the car-centered suburbs to maintaining the high quality of life and attractiveness of St. Louis County for the overwhelming majority of the population?


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