In time the mines played out and the population of Central City and its sister city Blackhawk fell to a few hundred by the 1950s. Casino gambling has been introduced recently with more success in Blackhawk than in Central City.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 4.9 km² (1.9 mi²). None of the area is covered with water.
As of the census of 2000, there are 515 people, 261 households, and 101 families residing in the city. The population density is 105.2/km² (273.0/mi²). There are 394 housing units at an average density of 80.5/km² (208.8/mi²). The racial makeup of the city is 91.84% White, 0.19% African American, 1.55% Native American, 1.17% Asian, 1.17% Pacific Islander, 2.52% from other races, and 1.55% from two or more races. 9.32% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There are 261 households out of which 17.6% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 26.8% are married couples living together, 8.8% have a female householder with no husband present, and 61.3% are non-families. 43.3% of all households are made up of individuals and 6.1% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 1.97 and the average family size is 2.76.
In the city the population is spread out with 16.5% under the age of 18, 10.1% from 18 to 24, 34.0% from 25 to 44, 30.9% from 45 to 64, and 8.5% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 39 years. For every 100 females there are 115.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 115.0 males.
The median income for a household in the city is $30,921, and the median income for a family is $31,667. Males have a median income of $32,917 versus $25,446 for females. The per capita income for the city is $26,465. 12.3% of the population and 7.4% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total people living in poverty, 8.3% are under the age of 18 and 5.2% are 65 or older.