In the coming decades, no ethnic group may have more of an economic impact on the local level in the U.S. than Asian-Americans. Asia is now the largest source of legal immigrants to the U.S., constituting 40% of new arrivals in 2013. They are the country’s highest-income, best-educated and fastest-growing racial group — their share of the U.S. population has increased from 4.2% in 2000 to 5.6% in 2010, and is expected to reach 8.6% by 2050.
Widening the focus to smaller cities, for the most part, the most heavily Asian communities in America tend to be prosperous, and many are tech oriented. They also tend to be overwhelmingly suburban, often in places that have good public schools.
Shift To The Suburbs-In the past Asians, like other immigrants, tended to cluster in “gateway cities” and often in the densest urban neighborhoods, like New York’s Chinatown. Now the center of gravity has shifted to the suburbs. Between 2000 and 2012, the Asian population in suburban areas of the nation’s 52 biggest metro areas grew 66.2% while those in the core cities expanded by 34.9%. In 2000 three large cities ranked among the 20 most heavily Asian cities with populations over 50,000: Honolulu, San Francisco and San Jose. In 2012, only the Hawaiian capital made the grade (Hawaii is the only state with an Asian majority).
As of 2012, 18 of the 20 most heavily Asian communities were suburban, all but one of them are in California. Not surprisingly quite a few are the smaller cities of Silicon Valley, where Asians constitute roughly half of all tech employees. Cupertino, a city of 59,700 that is home to Apple’s headquarters, takes the title of the most Asian city in the U.S., with a population that was 65% Asian as of 2012, up from 45.9% in 2000. Other suburban cities around the Bay that are majority Asian include No. 2 Milpitas (64.5% Asian), Daley City, Sunnyvale, Fremont , Santa Clara and Union City. Of them, only Daley City and Milpitas were majority Asian in 2000.