Kent, Washington facts for kids

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Kent, Washington
City
Kent Station, Kent Regional Library top right, and Kent Sounder Station 2009
Kent Station, Kent Regional Library top right, and Kent Sounder Station 2009
Flag of Kent, Washington
Flag
Location of Kent, Washington in King County
Location of Kent, Washington in King County
Country United States
State Washington
County King
Founded May 28, 1890
Area
 • Total 34.19 sq mi (88.55 km2)
 • Land 33.63 sq mi (87.1 km2)
 • Water 0.56 sq mi (1.45 km2)
Elevation 43-500 ft (13-152 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 92,411
 • Estimate (2015) 126,952
 • Rank US: 216th
 • Density 3,227.8/sq mi (1,246.3/km2)
Time zone PST (UTC-8)
 • Summer (DST) PDT (UTC-7)
ZIP codes 98030, 98031, 98032, 98035, 98042, 98064, 98089
Area code(s) 253
FIPS code 53-35415
GNIS feature ID 1530952
Website kentwa.gov

Kent is a city located in King County, Washington, United States. It is the sixth largest city in the state and third largest in the county. Kent is in the heart of the Seattle–Tacoma metroplex, located 19 miles south of Seattle and 19 miles northeast of Tacoma. Incorporated in 1890, it is the second oldest incorporated city in King County, after Seattle. Kent's population as of April, 2010 was 92,411 according to the 2010 census. The total grew to an estimated 126,952 as of July 1, 2015, owing primarily to annexation.

Once a thriving agricultural area, Kent is now home to hundreds of companies. Among the many corporations headquartered in Kent are REI (Recreational Equipment Inc.), Oberto Sausage Company, Blue Origin, and the two largest waterjet companies in the United States: Flow International Corporation and Omax Corporation.

History

The Kent area was first permanently settled by westerners in the early 1860s along the banks of (what was then) the White River, and originally called Titusville. (There is still a 'Titusville Station' sign on Gowe Street near First Avenue.)

During the 1880s the town discovered hops production as the major source of income. Due to an aphid invasion which affected hops crops in Europe, hops from the Puget Sound area were commanding high prices. Hops were shipped from Titusville either by the river or via rail. In 1889 the town was renamed for the County of Kent, the major hops producing region in England. Hops production in the White River valley came to an end soon after its own invasion of aphids in 1891.

Kent was officially incorporated on May 28, 1890 with a population of 793, the second city incorporated in King County. Seattle was the first.

After the turn of the 20th century the area turned to dairy farming, and was home to a Carnation Condensed Milk plant. Flooding from both the Green and the White Rivers was a constant problem. In 1906, flooding changed the course of the White River, which reduced the flood hazard by half. The Green River continued to present problems until the creation of the Howard A. Hanson Dam at Eagle Gorge in 1962.

During and after the Great Depression, Kent was known as the "Lettuce Capital of the World." After WWII, Kent began to grow more rapidly. From 1953 to 1960 the city's size grew twelve-fold. In 1965 Boeing began building in Kent, followed a few years later by other aerospace and high-tech companies.

In 1992, the Greater Kent Historical Society was formed to promote the discovery, preservation and dissemination of knowledge about the history of the greater Kent area. In 1996, the City of Kent purchased the historic Bereiter house, the home of one of Kent's early mayors, for use as the Kent Historical Museum. The museum is operated by the Greater Kent Historical Society.

In 2009, Kent got its first sports team when WHL's Seattle Thunderbirds moved into the ShoWare Center.

Geography

Kent is divided into three major regions: East Hill, the Valley, and West Hill. Downtown Kent is located on the east side of the valley; the rest of the valley is almost entirely covered by warehouses. There is a good view of Mt. Rainier to the southeast.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 29.19 square miles (75.60 km2), of which, 28.63 square miles (74.15 km2) is land and 0.56 square miles (1.45 km2) is water. Major waterways include the Green River, which flows north through Kent on its way to Puget Sound. The largest lake is Lake Meridian on the city's East Hill.

Nearby cities include Renton and Tukwila to the north, Covington and Maple Valley to the east, Auburn to the south, and Federal Way, Des Moines and SeaTac to the west.

Transportation

Kentsounderstation
Kent Station during the night.

There are several major freeway and highway in or near Kent, including Interstate 5, State Route 167, and State Route 516, and, as a result, a much greater traffic density during rush hour. Kent is also central to King County Metro transit, with the Kent Station providing service to many destinations, including downtown Seattle by multiple commuter buses, the Sounder Commuter Rail, and local bus service. Heavy rail service includes two major north-south lines through the Kent Valley, with freight traffic operations by the BNSF and Union Pacific railroads.

Parks

Kent's extensive park system includes 73 parks, miniparks, playfields, skateparks, greenbelts, and other related facilities. These parks range in size from as little as 4,300 square feet (400 m2) to over 160 acres (0.65 km2).

Climate

Climate data for Kent, Washington
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 64
(17.8)
71
(21.7)
81
(27.2)
86
(30)
92
(33.3)
100
(37.8)
103
(39.4)
99
(37.2)
96
(35.6)
86
(30)
74
(23.3)
69
(20.6)
103
(39.4)
Average high °F (°C) 47
(8.3)
51
(10.6)
55
(12.8)
61
(16.1)
67
(19.4)
72
(22.2)
77
(25)
78
(25.6)
72
(22.2)
62
(16.7)
52
(11.1)
46
(7.8)
61.7
(16.48)
Average low °F (°C) 32
(0)
36
(2.2)
39
(3.9)
42
(5.6)
47
(8.3)
52
(11.1)
55
(12.8)
55
(12.8)
51
(10.6)
44
(6.7)
39
(3.9)
34
(1.1)
43.8
(6.57)
Record low °F (°C) −10
(-23.3)
−5
(-20.6)
10
(-12.2)
25
(-3.9)
27
(-2.8)
33
(0.6)
38
(3.3)
34
(1.1)
28
(-2.2)
24
(-4.4)
−1
(-18.3)
3
(-16.1)
−10
(-23.3)
Precipitation inches (mm) 5.3
(135)
4.5
(114)
4.1
(104)
2.9
(74)
2.1
(53)
1.7
(43)
0.9
(23)
1.2
(30)
1.8
(46)
3.4
(86)
6.1
(155)
5.8
(147)
37.1
(942)
Source: Weather.com

City landmarks

Kent has designated the following landmarks:

Name Constructed Designated
Emil W. Bereiter House 1907 2008
Mill Creek Canyon Earthworks 1982 2008
Saar Pioneer Cemetery 1873 2010

Demographics

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1890 853
1900 755 −11.5%
1910 1,908 152.7%
1920 2,282 19.6%
1930 2,320 1.7%
1940 2,586 11.5%
1950 3,278 26.8%
1960 9,017 175.1%
1970 17,711 96.4%
1980 22,961 29.6%
1990 37,960 65.3%
2000 79,524 109.5%
2010 92,411 16.2%
Est. 2015 126,952 59.6%
source:
U.S. Decennial Census
2015 Estimate

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 92,411 people, 34,044 households, and 21,816 families residing in the city. The population density was 3,227.8 inhabitants per square mile (1,246.3/km2). There were 36,424 housing units at an average density of 1,272.2 per square mile (491.2/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 55.5% White (49.7% Non-Hispanic White), 11.3% African American, 1.0% Native American, 15.2% Asian, 1.9% Pacific Islander, 8.5% from other races, and 6.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 16.6% of the population.

There were 34,044 households of which 37.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.6% were married couples living together, 14.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 6.1% had a male householder with no wife present, and 35.9% were non-families. 28.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.5% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.67 and the average family size was 3.31.

The median age in the city was 33 years. 26.2% of residents were under the age of 18; 10.1% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 30.6% were from 25 to 44; 24.3% were from 45 to 64; and 8.8% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.9% male and 50.1% female.

2000 census

As of the census of 2000, there were 79,524 people, 31,113 households, and 19,601 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,836.7 people per square mile (1,095.4/km2). There were 32,488 housing units at an average density of 1,158.9 per square mile (447.5/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 70.81% White, 8.23% African American, 0.98% Native American, 9.42% Asian, 0.76% Pacific Islander, 4.7% from other races, and 5.37% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 8.13% of the population.

There were 32,998 households out of which 35.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.1% were married couples living together, 12.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.0% were non-families. 28.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.53 and the average family size was 3.15.

In the city the population was spread out with 27.7% under the age of 18, 10.3% from 18 to 24, 35.0% from 25 to 44, 19.6% from 45 to 64, and 7.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 32 years. For every 100 females there were 98.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 96.2 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $50,053, and the median income for a family was $61,016. Males had a median income of $43,136 versus $36,995 for females. The per capita income for the city was $21,390. About 8.7% of families and 11.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 16.7% of those under the age of 18 and 9.3% of those 65 and older.

Recreation and entertainment

In 2003, Kent was named Sports Illustrated's Sportstown of the year for Washington. In January 2006, a major new entertainment center, known as Kent Station, opened in downtown Kent adjacent to the transit station of the same name.

The 2012 Skate America figure skating competition was held in Kent from October 19 to 21, 2012, at ShoWare Center.

In July 2015, Kent hosted the inaugural Junior Roller Derby World Cup.

Showarecenter
ShoWare Center Home of the Seattle Thunderbirds.

Events

  • Kent Saturday Market

Entertainment

  • ShoWare Center
  • Seattle Thunderbirds play ice hockey in the U.S. Division of the Western Hockey League at the ShoWare Center in Kent.
  • Tacoma Stars plays Indoor Soccer in the Major Arena Soccer League at the ShoWare Center in Kent.

The people of Kent are also often fans of the Seattle Seahawks an NFL team, the Seattle Sounders FC, a MLS team, the Seattle Mariners, an MLB team, and the former NBA team the Seattle SuperSonics in the nearby city of Seattle.

Sister cities

Kent has the following sister cities:

Images for kids


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