LOUISVILLE, Ky.- Lexington has surpassed Louisville as the most populous city in Kentucky by more than 4,000 people, according to 2000 Census figures released today by the Kentucky State Data Center at the University of Louisville.

    For the first time ever, Lexington’s population surged past Louisville’s. From 1990 to 2000, Lexington’s population grew from 225,366 to 260,512, an increase of 13.5 percent. Louisville’s population declined from 269,838 to 256,231, a 5 percent decrease.

    Overall, Kentucky’s population grew by 9.7 percent last decade, compared to less than 1 percent in the 1980s. A majority of that growth occurred in the state’s urban areas and along interstate highways. The significant turnaround can be attributed to the influx of people moving to Kentucky from other states, said Ron Crouch, director of the Kentucky State Data Center, the state’s clearinghouse for census data.

    “The overall population growth in Kentucky is closely mirroring the growth that has occurred in the Southeastern part of the United States in the last decade,” Crouch said.

    The state’s Hispanic or Latino population nearly tripled in the last 10 years to 59,939. This represents 1.5 percent of Kentucky’s overall population. Of those reporting only one race, 90.1 percent of Kentucky residents were white, 7.3 percent were African-American, 0.7 percent were Asian, 0.2 percent were American Indian and Alaskan Native, less than 0.1 percent were native Hawaiian and other Pacific Islander and 0.6 percent were of another race. An additional 1.1 percent reported two or more races.

    The census figures, which list total population by county and city and break down population by race and origin and those who are of voting age, primarily will be used for redrawing legislative districts throughout the state. More detailed information from the 2000 Census is scheduled to be released over the next one-and-a-half years.

    Details are posted on the data center’s Web site, For more information, call the Kentucky State Data Center at (502) 852-7990.