Mark Wert reports:
Hamilton County has among the highest number of commuters coming from another county in the nation, the U.S. Census Bureau reported today.
Forty percent of the workers in Hamilton County don’t live there, new estimates from the American Community Survey show. Nationally, 27.4 percent of workers commute outside the county where they live.
The finding underscores how the county remains the biggest economic engine in the 15-county Cincinnati region, despite recent population losses.
Among workers in Hamilton County, 188,113 live outside the county, according to 2006-2010 Census estimates. For example, 45,965 workers commute in from Butler County, 40,247 from Clermont County and 25,797 from Warren County.
Meanwhile, 66,994 residents of Hamilton County leave the county for work, or only 18.6 percent of the county’s total. The biggest group, 20,856, goes to Butler County, while 11,619 go to Warren County and 8,260 go to Kenton County.
“It is well known that Hamilton County draws a lot of commuters to work,” said Brian McKenzie, a Census Bureau statistician who studies commuting, in a release. The information on commuting and how Hamilton County compares to others “shapes our understanding of the boundaries of local and regional economies, as people and goods move across the nation’s transportation networks,” McKenzie said.
The new Census estimates also show that Hamilton County commuters:
- Face a slightly shorter commute than people in other areas. The average commute to or in the county is 22.5 minutes, three minutes shorter than the national average.
- Are more likely to drive alone than commuters nationally. The estimates show 79.3 percent of commuters in the county drive alone, or 2.9 percentage points more than the 76.4 percent national average.
- Are less likely to take public transportation. Only 3.9 percent of commuters to Hamilton County take the bus compared to the 5 percent average nationally.
- Very rarely ride a bicycle. Just 0.2 percent of Hamilton County commuters ride a bike to work, compared to 0.6 percent nationally.
The only way that Hamilton County commuters are “average” is in the way they carpool. The estimates show 9.2 percent of county commuters carpool, a rate that Census officials said wasn’t statistically different from the 9.7 percent national average.