The suburbs of all 100 metropolitan areas experienced Hispanic population gains in 2000–10. But the fastest Hispanic growth rates, all more than 150 percent, are found in the suburbs of the New Sun Belt cities of Nashville, Charlotte, Raleigh, and Provo as well as the Heartland cities of Indianapolis and Scranton, Pennsylvania. Asians also contributed to city and suburban population gains in each of the 100 largest metropolitan areas, and made substantial contributions to suburban gains in Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, and Washington, DC. These new minorities and their later generations are poised to become the backbone of future suburban growth in ways that will transform the nation.

Another factor driving the diversification of the suburbs is the emergence of “black flight” from major cities with established black populations. Black population losses have been occurring in some cities since the 1970s, but the magnitude and pervasiveness of black losses in cities during the first decade of the 2000s were unprecedented. The central cities of the 100 largest metropolitan areas saw a total decline of 300,000 blacks, the first absolute population decrease among blacks for these cities as a group. The black presence, which has been the mainstay of many urban populations, is diminishing (in fact it is now Hispanics, not blacks, who constitute the largest minority group in cities).