October 18, 2016 10:03
The population of Incheon will likely exceed the 3 million mark this week as the area around the capital continues to boom.
The city's population stood at 2,999,884 as of Monday, only 116 people short of the milestone. Its population has been increasing at a rate of 50 to 60 a day.
Incheon will only be the third Korean city after Seoul and Busan with a population of over 3 million. Busan hit the milestone in 1980.
Incheon's population has grown consistently as Seoul's started to drop and fell below 10 million in May for the first time in 28 years. Busan's population has also dwindled, from 3.6 million in 2010 to 3.55 million this year, and Daegu's from 2.53 million to 2.51 million.
The population surge in Incheon started with a massive construction drive in Songdo and Yeongjong Island in 1995, when many Seoul citizens left the capital due to soaring housing prices.
Korea's overall population growth is slowing to almost nothing, so barring any spectacular changes Incheon is probably the last city to reach a population of 3 million.
Daejeon has 1.51 million people, Gwangju 1.47 million and Ulsan 1.17 million.
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