Race in LA: See How We’ve Grown


Maps by Eric Fischer

Imagine Pittsburgh moving into L.A.—that’s how much our city’s population has swelled in two decades. The central city is far denser today, and of course the composition has changed, too, with the number of Latinos and Asians increasing while the proportion of blacks and whites has decreased. Based on census data (each dot represents 25 people), our maps tell the tale of an evolving metropolis.

Who Lives Where


1. Most highly concentrated in the north San Fernando Valley, Latinos are now the region’s largest ethnic group.

2. With 47% of its population of Chinese descent, Monterey Park is the first mainland American city to have an Asian majority.

3. An empty industrial relic in 1990, Playa Vista is now one of L.A.’s most racially and ethnically diverse communities.

4. African Americans continue to leave South L.A. Compton is now 65% Latino, though there are no Latinos on the city council.