Central Coast populations decline: Which cities lost the most people?

May 3, 2023


California’s population decline continues, though the rate has slowed, according to a state demographic report released Monday. Only three cities in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties experienced population increases.

Stable births, fewer deaths, and a rebound in foreign immigration slowed California’s population decline in 2022. Even so, the state’s population fell by roughly 138,400 people because of the number of residents moving out of state, often because of cost of living concerns.

SLO County lost 1,405 people in 2022, or 0.5%. With a gain of 541 people, San Luis Obispo was the only city in the county to experience a population increase.

Santa Barbara County lost 2,599 people in 2022, or 0.6%. Only two cities in the county, Goleta and Guadalupe, saw population increases.

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I guess Los Osos is not a city. That explains a lot.

It’s not incorporated. That will make it a county number, not a city number. SLO County incorporated cities, lost 1019 people. SLO County overall, lost 1405.

Cambria, was not included in this report, however, its population has decreased more significantly than those areas cited in the report.

In the 2000 census, Cambria’s population was 6,232

In the 2010 census, Cambria’s population was 6,032

In the 2020 census, Cambria’s population was 5,678

The population at the end of 2022 was 5,487

Cambria is not incorporated. Their numbers will be in the County total.

Please. THe story lists 22 and 23. Why data from 2000?

Question – how does CP’s population get counted? Is it possible CP admissions went up at least as much or more than SLO increase?

Strange. People on this site have been telling me that SLO city has been a unlivable hellhole for years. Particularly when they’re funding new parking structures, reelecting a very popular mayor, building bike lanes, parks, housing, new commercial space etc. Really makes you think.

Lol, yup. A bunch of whiners with too much time on their hands. They should move to an actual hellhole city and then they’d have something real to complain about!

Some are content to live in a hell hole, others move


Couple a hundred thousand out of 38M what a decline, whatever will we do when they all move away?

I moved here from a hellhole back east, this place is great.

What about Nipomo? Any changes?

Yet driving anywhere through SLO county is a nightmare and not just because of the bikes? If the population has declined who’s driving all those cars along broad street every day? Toll booth on Broad and Buckley intersection would rake in $$$…