Palm Beach County

Palm Beach County is located in the state of Florida. As of 2007, the county had a population of 1,351,236 according to the University of Florida, Bureau of Economic and Business Research. The county is the third most populous in the state of Florida and the twenty ninth most populous in the United States. Over 40 percent of the county’s population lives in unincorporated areas.

Palm Beach County is one of three counties that comprise the South Florida metropolitan area, and being formed in 1909, is the area’s second oldest county. Its largest city and county seat is West Palm Beach (Central County), which has an incorporated population of over 105,000 and an unincorporated population of 250,000. Boca Raton (South County), is the second largest city, and has a population approaching 90,000. Boynton Beach (South County), is the third largest city, with a population nearing 70,000 residents.

History
Palm Beach County was created in 1909. It was named for its first settled community, Palm Beach, in turn named for the palm trees and beaches in the area. The County was carved out of what was then the northern portion of Dade County, and stretched northward to Brevard county, comprising part of the areas now occupied by Okeechobee and Broward counties, and all of Martin and Palm Beach counties, initially including all of Lake Okeechobee, making it the largest county in Florida at the time. The southernmost part of Palm Beach County was separated to create the northern portion of Broward County in 1915, the northwestern portion of Palm Beach County became part of Okeechobee County 1917 and Martin County was created from northernmost Palm Beach County in 1925. About three-quarters of Lake Okeechobee was removed from Palm Beach County in 1963 and divided up among Glades, Hendry, Martin and Okeechobee counties.

Henry Flagler, who made his home in Palm Beach, was instrumental in the county’s development in the early 1900s with the extension of the Florida East Coast Railway through the county from Jacksonville to Key West.

Geography
View of Lake Okeechobee from Pahokee.According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 2,386 square miles (6,181 km²).1,974 square miles (5,113 km²) of it is land (making it the largest Florida county by area) and 412 square miles (1,068 km²) of it is water, much of it in the Atlantic Ocean and Lake Okeechobee. The total area is 17.27% water.

The boundaries of area code 561 exactly match the county’s. Originally, it was part of area code 305, and later area code 407.

Crime
In 2000, crime in Palm Beach County was as follows (2006 report indicates that robbery in Palm Beach County was up 20%):

Crime Number – Total 72,211

  • Murder 85
  • Rape 428
  • Robbery 2,369
  • Aggravated Assault 5,288
  • Burglary 14,770
  • Larceny – theft 41,801
  • Motor vehicle thefts 7,239
  • Population 1,097,962
  • Coverage indicator 100%

Demographics

Historical populations
Census Pop.   %±
1910 5,577  —
1920 18,654  234.5%
1930 51,781  177.6%
1940 79,989  54.5%
1950 114,688  43.4%
1960 228,106  98.9%
1970 348,753  52.9%
1980 576,863  65.4%
1990 863,518  49.7%
2000 1,131,184  31%

As of the census of 2000, there were 1,131,184 people, 474,175 households, and 303,946 families residing in the county. The population density was 573 people per square mile (221/km²). Approximately 41% of Palm Beach County’s population resides in unincorporated areas within the county. There were 556,428 housing units at an average density of 282 per square mile (109/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 79.05% White (70.6% were Non-Hispanic White,) 13.80% Black or African American, 0.22% Native American, 1.51% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 2.98% from other races, and 2.38% from two or more races. 12.44% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race. In relation to ancestry (excluding the various Hispanic and Latino ancestries), 10% were Italian, 9% German, 8% Irish, 8% American, 6% English, 4% Russian, and 4% Polish ancestry according to Census 2000.

196,852 of Palm Beach County residents, or 17.4% percent of the total population, were foreign-born (43% of whom were naturalized U.S. citizens).[5] The most common countries of foreign-born residents included Haiti (14%), Cuba (10%), Mexico (9%), Jamaica (6%), Canada (5%), Colombia (5%), and the United Kingdom (3%).

There were 474,175 households out of which 24.90% reported children under the age of 18 living in the household, 50.80% were married couples living together without children, 9.70% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.90% were non-related individuals. 29.20% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.60% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.34 and the average family size was 2.89.

Age ranges found in the county were 21.30% under the age of 18, 6.60% aged 18 to 24, 27.00% aged 25 to 44, 22.00% aged 45 to 64, and 23.20% 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42 years. Overall, the female to male ratio was 100:93. The female to male ratio for those over the age of 18 was 100:91.

The median household income was $45,062, and the median income for a family was $53,701. Males had a median income of $36,931 versus $28,674 for females. The per capita income for the county was $28,801. About 6.90% of families and 9.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 14.30% of those under age 18 and 6.60% of those age 65 or over.

2006 Census Report – U.S. Census Bureau 2006 Ethnic/Race Demographics:

  • White (non-Hispanic): 64.5%
  • Black (non-Hispanic): 16.4%
  • Hispanic or Latino of any race: 16.7%
  • Some other race: 7.1%
  • Asian: 2.1%
  • Two or more races: 1.1%
  • American Indian and Alaska Native: 0.4%
  • Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander: 0.1%

The median price of an existing home in Palm Beach County as of September, 2006 is $380,900.

Languages
As of 2000, 78.36% of all residents spoke English as a primary language, while 11.89% spoke Spanish, 2.81% French Creole, 1.12% French, 0.76% Italian, 0.68% German, and 0.52% of the population spoke Yiddish. In total, 78.36% spoke English as a primary language, while 21.64% spoke languages other than English.

Politics
Palm Beach County has trended heavily towards Democrats in recent Presidential Elections. It was the center of a worldwide media storm in 2000, when it was ground zero for the recount in the extremely controversial election between eventual winner George W. Bush over Al Gore. The controversy stemmed from the infamous butterfly ballot in Palm Beach County, where many voters later claimed they mistakenly voted for Independent Pat Buchanan instead of Al Gore because of the design of the ballot. In the end, Gore won the county, but Bush captured the state by just 537 votes (out of nearly 5 million cast, a difference of .009%) after the recount was halted by the US Supreme Court. (Bush vs. Gore)

Borders
Palm Beach County borders Martin County to the North, the Atlantic Ocean to the East, Broward County to the South, Hendry County to the West, and Lake Okeechobee to the Northwest.

Municipalities and census-designated places

Incorporated

  • City of Pahokee
  • City of Belle Glade
  • City of South Bay
  • Village of Tequesta
  • Town of Jupiter Inlet Colony
  • Town of Jupiter
  • Town of Juno Beach
  • City of Palm Beach Gardens
  • Village of North Palm Beach
  • Town of Lake Park
  • City of Riviera Beach
  • Town of Palm Beach Shores
  • Town of Mangonia Park
  • Town of Palm Beach
  • City of West Palm Beach
  • Town of Haverhill
  • Town of Glen Ridge
  • Town of Cloud Lake
  • Village of Palm Springs
  • Town of Lake Clarke Shores
  • Village of Royal Palm Beach
  • Village of Wellington
  • City of Greenacres
  • City of Atlantis
  • City of Lake Worth
  • Town of South Palm Beach
  • Town of Lantana
  • Town of Manalapan
  • Town of Hypoluxo
  • City of Boynton Beach
  • Town of Ocean Ridge
  • Village of Golf
  • Town of Briny Breezes
  • Town of Gulf Stream
  • City of Delray Beach
  • Town of Highland Beach
  • City of Boca Raton
  • Town of Loxahatchee Groves

Unincorporated census-designated places

  • Belle Glade Camp
  • Boca Del Mar
  • Boca Pointe
  • Canal Point
  • Century Village
  • Cypress Lakes
  • Dunes Road
  • Fremd Village-Padgett Island
  • Golden Lakes
  • Gun Club Estates
  • Hamptons at Boca Raton
  • High Point
  • Juno Ridge
  • Kings Point
  • Lake Belvedere Estates
  • Lake Harbor
  • Lake Worth Corridor
  • Lakeside Green
  • Limestone Creek
  • Mission Bay
  • Plantation Mobile Home Park
  • Royal Palm Estates
  • Sandalfoot Cove
  • Schall Circle
  • Seminole Manor
  • Stacey Street
  • Villages of Oriole
  • Westgate-Belvedere Homes
  • Whisper Walk

Education
All of Palm Beach County is served by the School District of Palm Beach County. As of 2006, it was the 4th largest school district in Florida and the 11th largest school district in the United States. As of August, 2006, the district operated 164 schools, including 25 high schools, and, as of July 22, 2006 had an additional 33 charter schools, with seven more scheduled to open in August, 2006.[10] Newsweek listed three Palm Beach County high schools in the top 50 schools in the list 1200 Top U.S. Schools – Atlantic Community High School, Suncoast High School and the Alexander Dreyfoos School of the Arts, all public magnet schools.

Colleges/Universities

  • Palm Beach Community College
  • Florida Atlantic University
  • Palm Beach Atlantic University
  • Lynn University
  • Northwood University

Sports
The Palm Beach Imperials are an American Basketball Association 2006 expansion franchise.

The Jupiter Hammerheads are a Single-A affiliate of the Florida Marlins and the Palm Beach Cardinals are a Single-A affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals. Both teams play their games at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter.

Currently, the St. Louis Cardinals and Florida Marlins conduct their spring training at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter.

Prior to the construction of Roger Dean Stadium, the Montreal Expos and Atlanta Braves held their spring training at Municipal Stadium in West Palm Beach. The West Palm Beach Expos, a Single-A affiliate of the Montreal Expos, also played their games there.

Points of interest

  • American Orchid Society Visitor Center and Botanical Garden
  • Lion Country Safari
  • Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens, including the Roji-en Japanese Gardens
  • Mounts Botanical Garden
  • Roji-en Japanese Gardens
  • The Norton Museum of Art
  • The Kravis Center for the Performing Arts
  • Lake Worth Casino

Above information was gathered from the Wikipedia free online encyclopedia. All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License. (See Copyrights for details.)

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