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Gateway Cities Census Data




Description: The City of Downey was named after Civil War governor John Gately Downey, although the city traces its roots to the days of Spanish rule when priests were building missions in California. The piece of property that eventually would become the City of Downey, Rancho Santa Gertrudes,was sold to John Gately Downey and James McFarland in the 1850s.

Downey’s growth began, after World War II. At the end of the war, the city had about 32,000 residents. It incorporated in 1956 with a population of more than 89,000. Today, the city includes a population that is proud of the city’s heritage. Since 1955, every year a handful of volunteers raise money to build and decorate a float for Pasadena’s Tournament of Roses Parade.

The city has many landmarks including Rives Mansion, formerly the home of city pioneer James C. Rives, and the world’s oldest McDonald’s, the last one with red-andwhite striped tile exterior. The Downey McDonald’s, which opened in 1953, still features a 60-foot high neon sign with “Speedee the Chef.” Other attractions include the Downey History Center and the Downey Museum of Art.

(city description courtesy of Press Telegram 2006 Almanac)

  1990 2000 2010
Population 91,444 107,323 111,772
Percent of Los Angeles County Population 1.03% 1.13% 1.14%
Median Age   31.6 33.3
Number of Households 33,013 33,989 33,936
Unemployment Rate 5.44% 6.52% 10.20%
Average Household Income (in 2010 dollars)   $74,780 $72,279
Median Household Income (in 2010 dollars) $65,049 $59,772 $59,674



Downey Educational Attainment Graph


Downey Annual Household Income Graph


Downey Population by Race & Ethnicity 1990


Downey Population by Race & Ethnicity 2000


Downey Population by Race & Ethnicity 2010