Most Diverse Cities In North Carolina For 2020


We used data and science to determine the most diverse cities in North Carolina.

Editor’s Note: We updated this article for 2020. This is our sixth time ranking the most diverse places in North Carolina.


Most Diverse Cities In North Carolina

Article continues below.

Race relations in America seem to be hitting a tipping point.

While we still haven't dealt with racism as a society, the election of Donald Trump to the presidency has only flamed the tensions that have been mounting for years.

Part of the reason for that tension? The country as a whole continues to self segregate across race, income, and party lines. But it's not all bad on the race relations front.

There are parts of North Carolina where there's a high level of diversity -- where people of all walks of life come together. We decided to shine a light on those places today.

Using a standard measure of diversity, we ranked all 136 cities in North Carolina from most to least diverse.

Here are the 10 most diverse places in North Carolina for 2020:

  1. Spring Lake
  2. Lumberton (Photos)
  3. Siler City (Photos)
  4. Charlotte (Photos)
  5. Morrisville (Photos)
  6. Durham (Photos)
  7. High Point (Photos)
  8. Fayetteville (Photos)
  9. Monroe (Photos)
  10. Sanford (Photos)

So what city is the most diverse in North Carolina? According to the most Census data, Spring Lake took the number one over all spot for diversity in North Carolina.

Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers and how your town ranked. To see where North Carolina ranked as a state, we have a ranking of the most diverse states in Ameria.

And if you already knew these places were diverse, check out:

The 10 Most Diverse Places In North Carolina For 2020

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 12,284

HHI: 2,994
% White: 39.1%
% African American: 33.9%
% Asian: 3.0%
More on Spring Lake: Data

Spring Lake is a town in Cumberland County, North Carolina, United States. The 2010 census recorded the population at 11,964 people, with an estimated population in 2013 of 13,037.

Lumberton, NC

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 21,198

HHI: 3,012
% White: 38.8%
% African American: 35.2%
% Asian: 1.4%
More on Lumberton: PhotosData

Lumberton is a city in Robeson County, North Carolina, United States. The population has grown to 21,542 in the 2010 census from 20,795 in the 2000 census. It is the county seat of Robeson County. Lumberton, located in southern North Carolina's Inner Banks region, is located on the Lumber River. Founded in 1787 by John Willis, an officer in the American Revolution, Lumberton was originally a shipping point for lumber used by the Navy, which was sent downriver to Georgetown, South Carolina. Most of the town's growth, however, began shortly after World War II.

Siler City, NC

Overall SnackAbility

2
/10

Population: 8,106

HHI: 3,103
% White: 28.5%
% African American: 21.4%
% Asian: 1.7%
More on Siler City: PhotosData

Siler City is a town in Chatham County, North Carolina, United States. As of the 2010 census, the town's population was 7,887. The population was estimated to be 8,169 in 2013.

Charlotte, NC

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 841,611

HHI: 3,193
% White: 41.9%
% African American: 34.5%
% Asian: 6.5%
More on Charlotte: PhotosData

Charlotte is the most populous city in the U.S. state of North Carolina. It is the county seat of Mecklenburg County. In 2016, the U.S.Census Bureau estimated the population was 842,051, making it the 17th-most populous city in the United States. The Charlotte metropolitan area ranks 22nd-largest in the U.S., and had a 2016 population of 2,474,314. The Charlotte metropolitan area is part of a sixteen-county market region or combined statistical area with a 2016 U.S.Census population estimate of 2,632,249. Between 2004 and 2014, Charlotte was ranked as the country's fastest growing metro area, with 888,000 new residents. Based on U.S. Census data from 2005 to 2015, it also tops the 50 largest U.S. cities as the millennial hub. It is the second-largest city in the southeastern United States, just behind Jacksonville, Florida. It is the third-fastest growing major city in the United States. It is listed as a "gamma-minus" global city by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network. Residents are referred to as "Charlotteans".

Morrisville, NC

Source: Town of Morrisville
Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 25,007

HHI: 3,230
% White: 39.8%
% African American: 11.9%
% Asian: 38.2%
More on Morrisville: PhotosData

Morrisville is a town located in both Wake and Durham counties of the U.S. state of North Carolina. The population was 18,576 at the 2010 census. The U.S. Census Bureau estimates the town's population to be 21,932 as of July 1, 2013. Morrisville is part of the Research Triangle metropolitan region. The regional name originated after the 1959 creation of the Research Triangle Park, located midway between the cities of Raleigh and Durham. The Research Triangle region encompasses the U.S. Census Bureau's Combined Statistical Area of Raleigh-Durham-Cary. The estimated population of the Raleigh-Durham-Cary CSA was 1,565,223 as of July 1, 2006, with the Raleigh-Cary Metropolitan Statistical Area portion estimated at 994,551 residents. The U.S. headquarters of Chinese multinational Lenovo are located in the municipal limits.

Durham, NC

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 264,310

HHI: 3,242
% White: 38.9%
% African American: 38.7%
% Asian: 5.3%
More on Durham: PhotosData

Durham is a city in the U.S. state of North Carolina. It is the county seat of Durham County. The U.S. Census Bureau estimated the city's population to be 251,893 as of July 1, 2014, making it the 4th-most populous city in North Carolina, and the 78th-most populous city in the United States. Durham is the core of the four-county Durham-Chapel Hill Metropolitan Area, which has a population of 542,710 as of U.S. Census 2014 Population Estimates. The US Office of Management and Budget also includes Durham as a part of the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill Combined Statistical Area, which has a population of 2,037,430 as of U.S. Census 2014 Population Estimates.

High Point, NC

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

4
/10

Population: 111,035

HHI: 3,295
% White: 44.3%
% African American: 34.0%
% Asian: 8.0%
More on High Point: PhotosData

High Point is a city located in the Piedmont Triad region of the State of North Carolina. As of the 2010 census the city had a total population of 104,371, with an estimated population of 108,629 in 2014. High Point is currently the ninth-largest municipality in North Carolina.

Fayetteville, NC

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 209,867

HHI: 3,325
% White: 38.1%
% African American: 41.2%
% Asian: 2.8%
More on Fayetteville: PhotosData

Fayetteville is a city in Cumberland County, North Carolina, United States. It is the county seat of Cumberland County, and is best known as the home of Fort Bragg, a major U.S. Army installation northwest of the city.

Monroe, NC

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 34,679

HHI: 3,382
% White: 44.0%
% African American: 23.6%
% Asian: 1.0%
More on Monroe: PhotosData

Monroe is a city in and the county seat of Union County, North Carolina, United States. The population increased from 26,228 in 2000 to 32,797 in 2010. It is within the rapidly growing Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill, NC-SC Metropolitan area. Monroe has a council-manager form of government.

Sanford, NC

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 29,274

HHI: 3,389
% White: 44.6%
% African American: 26.9%
% Asian: 0.8%
More on Sanford: PhotosData

Sanford is a city in Lee County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 28,518 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Lee County.

How we determined the most diverse cities in North Carolina for 2020

We still believe in the accuracy of data -- especially from the census. So that's where we went to get the breakdown of race across North Carolina.

That lead us to the Census's most recently available data, the 2014-2018 American Community Survey data from the US Census.

Specifically, we looked at table B03002: HISPANIC OR LATINO ORIGIN BY RACE. Here are the category names as defined by the Census:

  • White alone*
  • Black or African American alone*
  • American Indian and Alaska Native alone*
  • Asian alone*
  • Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander alone*
  • Some other race alone*
  • Two or more races*
  • Hispanic or Latino
* Not hispanic or latino

We limited our analysis to non-CDPs with a population greater than 5,000 people. That left us with 136 cities.

We then calculated the HHI for each city by finding the racial breakdown of a city in percent terms, squaring them, and then adding the squares together. This left us with scores ranging from 2,994 (Spring Lake) to 9,780 (St. James).

Finally, we ranked each city based on the HHI with a lower score being more diverse than a high score. Spring Lake took the distinction of being the most diverse, while St. James was the least diverse city. You can download the data here.

Read on for more information on how the cities in North Carolina ranked for diversity or, for a more general take on diversity in america, head over to our ranking of the most diverse cities in America.

There You Have It - Diversity Across North Carolina

If you're looking for a scientific breakdown of diversity across North Carolina, this is an accurate list.

If you're curious enough, here are the least diverse places in North Carolina:

  1. St. James
  2. Oak Island
  3. Unionville

For more North Carolina reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Most Diverse Cities In North Carolina For 2020

Rank City Population HHI
1 Spring Lake, NC 12,284 2,994
2 Lumberton, NC 21,198 3,012
3 Siler City, NC 8,106 3,103
4 Charlotte, NC 841,611 3,193
5 Morrisville, NC 25,007 3,230
6 Durham, NC 264,310 3,242
7 High Point, NC 111,035 3,295
8 Fayetteville, NC 209,867 3,325
9 Monroe, NC 34,679 3,382
10 Sanford, NC 29,274 3,389
11 Lexington, NC 18,897 3,389
12 Smithfield, NC 12,117 3,429
13 Knightdale, NC 15,198 3,458
14 Clinton, NC 8,557 3,488
15 Winston-Salem, NC 242,125 3,510
16 Burlington, NC 52,524 3,521
17 Zebulon, NC 5,166 3,538
18 Pineville, NC 8,574 3,563
19 Butner, NC 7,699 3,584
20 Hope Mills, NC 15,762 3,632
21 Selma, NC 6,577 3,636
22 Roxboro, NC 8,283 3,656
23 Greensboro, NC 288,719 3,658
24 Washington, NC 9,649 3,701
25 Graham, NC 14,670 3,753
26 Raleigh, NC 457,159 3,788
27 Wilson, NC 49,230 3,807
28 Statesville, NC 26,263 3,882
29 Jacksonville, NC 73,226 3,911
30 Salisbury, NC 33,652 3,915
31 New Bern, NC 29,958 3,931
32 Laurinburg, NC 15,253 3,936
33 Elizabeth City, NC 17,604 4,000
34 Goldsboro, NC 34,972 4,027
35 Angier, NC 5,376 4,054
36 Greenville, NC 91,207 4,081
37 Havelock, NC 20,330 4,090
38 Clayton, NC 20,324 4,115
39 Mocksville, NC 5,184 4,131
40 Garner, NC 28,731 4,132
41 Hamlet, NC 6,362 4,167
42 Whiteville, NC 5,450 4,182
43 Tarboro, NC 11,045 4,197
44 Concord, NC 89,729 4,210
45 Gastonia, NC 75,138 4,217
46 Dunn, NC 9,635 4,259
47 Kannapolis, NC 47,553 4,266
48 Asheboro, NC 25,859 4,330
49 Thomasville, NC 26,839 4,360
50 Cary, NC 163,266 4,470
51 Mebane, NC 15,198 4,472
52 Reidsville, NC 13,909 4,477
53 Williamston, NC 5,375 4,486
54 Newton, NC 13,005 4,497
55 Lincolnton, NC 10,678 4,505
56 Roanoke Rapids, NC 14,937 4,518
57 Winterville, NC 9,546 4,527
58 Wendell, NC 6,828 4,534
59 Harrisburg, NC 15,269 4,537
60 Rolesville, NC 6,957 4,542
61 Hillsborough, NC 7,083 4,558
62 Conover, NC 8,300 4,564
63 Carrboro, NC 21,216 4,620
64 Shelby, NC 20,053 4,628
65 Eden, NC 15,121 4,670
66 Rockingham, NC 8,994 4,698
67 Ayden, NC 5,112 4,700
68 Henderson, NC 14,986 4,784
69 Oxford, NC 8,648 4,835
70 Albemarle, NC 15,889 4,844
71 Nashville, NC 5,523 4,852
72 Rocky Mount, NC 54,982 4,894
73 Hickory, NC 40,402 4,901
74 Chapel Hill, NC 59,561 4,930
75 Marion, NC 7,839 4,963
76 Gibsonville, NC 7,024 4,999
77 Forest City, NC 7,167 5,061
78 Marvin, NC 6,298 5,070
79 Kinston, NC 20,659 5,124
80 Morganton, NC 16,466 5,145
81 Kernersville, NC 24,088 5,147
82 Mint Hill, NC 26,168 5,243
83 Fuquay-Varina, NC 25,932 5,324
84 Aberdeen, NC 7,419 5,332
85 Wadesboro, NC 5,351 5,496
86 Belmont, NC 11,768 5,502
87 Wilmington, NC 118,094 5,517
88 Indian Trail, NC 37,983 5,532
89 Mooresville, NC 37,165 5,576
90 Mount Holly, NC 15,305 5,590
91 Holly Springs, NC 33,341 5,648
92 Wake Forest, NC 40,159 5,656
93 Walke, NC 5,043 5,715
94 Oak Ridge, NC 6,829 5,727
95 Apex, NC 48,254 5,740
96 Matthews, NC 31,400 5,828
97 Bessemer City, NC 5,438 5,919
98 Southern Pines, NC 13,694 5,919
99 Kings Mountain, NC 10,955 5,967
100 Huntersville, NC 54,572 5,977

How Is The Area In ?

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.