Three key themes thread through each section of this profile: growth, diversity, and disparity. These themes provide an important framework for understanding the changes over the past two decades in the Eden Area and indicate the direction that the Area is moving towards in the future.
Between 1990 and 2010, the Eden Area grew rapidly. In 2010, an additional 26,167 people resided in the Eden Area – representing a 25% increase since 1990. This growth equates to more than the current population of San Lorenzo—the second most populous community in the Eden Area. This growth can also be seen in the built environment with 5,436 housing units being constructed over the same time period; the expansion of transportation infrastructure like interstate 238; and the development of formerly open spaces like Five Canyons and along Palomares Ridge.
It is projected that Alameda County’s population will continue to grow in the coming decades. The pattern of the past two decades indicates that the Eden Area will continue to grow as well.
Eden Area residents have become increasingly diverse in race and ethnicity. For the first time, the Area has a majority of residents who identified as people of color. This change is not only driven by the increased number of Asian and Hispanic or Latino residents, more than 20,000 people, but also by the significant decrease in the number of residents who identified as White, 15,512 people. This ethnic and racial diversity change affects several aspects of the community from the number of students who are English-learners to the composition of BART ridership.
There are significant disparities among the different communities and neighborhoods in the Eden Area. Whether it is household incomes, the safety of neighborhoods, educational attainment or public health data there is no single description of the Eden Area. This gap between Eden Area’s communities grew in the past two decades. For example, household incomes in Castro Valley were 59% higher than those in Ashland in 2000. In 2010, the difference was 72%. Employment projections suggest that this trend will continue in the coming decade.