JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The five-county Jacksonville metro area grew by nearly one-fifth since 2010, according to Census Data fueled by a phenomenal 43.9 percent growth rate in St. Johns County and a 76.4 percent rise in the metro area’s Hispanic population.
The rise in the Hispanic population here in Jacksonville wasn’t a surprise to the president of the First Coast Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Monica Hernandez, who says she has seen many Hispanics coming to Jacksonville and starting new businesses.
“Drive around right when I moved here 15 years ago, I remember only seeing one or two Hispanic restaurants. Now you see Puerto Rican, Cuban, and Venezuelan," said Hernandez.
The First Coast Hispanic Chamber of Commerce helps business owners in the Hispanic community by providing resources and connections for business owners to thrive in Jacksonville.
First Coast News spoke with one Hispanic business owner, Veronica Garcia Brown, who is a local certified public accountant. She says even the foot traffic in her office has changed.
“Recently I have seen like a tremendous increase of the Hispanic populations and I've seen like either Puerto Ricans or Cubans," said Brown.
Hernandez says she’s so proud to see that the Hispanic community is growing.