The Providence (RI) metropolitan area was one of the slowest growing in the 2000 to 2010 period, according to counts just released by the Census Bureau. Providence grew 1.1 percent, from 1,583,000 to 1,601,000. The historical core municipality, the city of Providence gained 2.5 percent, from 174,000 to 178,000 and grew faster than the suburbs, like neighboring Boston. The city of Providence reached its population peak in 1940, at 254,000.
Even so, the suburbs attracted 75 percent of the metropolitan area growth.