By the numbers: Atlanta’s 90s sprawl

Atlanta grew faster than any city in history, as high-rises and cul-de-sacs seemed to sprout overnight

People moved here at the staggering rate of 360 per day, bursting the region’s boundaries and transforming its culture.

3.5 million
metro Atlanta residents, 1996

5.5 million
metro Atlanta residents, 2014

rate our suburban population grew during the ’90s. Between 1990 and 1998, more than 650,000 people moved to the northern suburbs; only 170,000 moved to the southside.

Atlanta’s rank in 2000—out of all metros on Earth—for longest average commute (35 miles). In 1997 the average Atlanta driver lost 68 hours a year due to traffic—up from 30 hours in 1990.

27 acres
amount of tree cover lost per day in the 1990s as construction and building boomed

rate Atlanta’s Hispanic population grew between 1980 and 2000

number of foreign companies located in metro Atlanta by 1995; today that number is 2,800.

Back to the 90s

This article originally appeared in our March 2015 issue under the headline “Sprawl City.”