See Maps Of The Dreaded Degentrification Spreading Across America


The number of Americans living in slums increased 33% in the past decade.

This scary trend was identified by a report out this morning from Brookings. Slums (our term) refer to areas of concentrated poverty where at least 40 per cent of individuals live under the poverty line.

In the 1990s, America’s slum population decreased from 9,101,622 to 6,574,815. Many neighborhoods experienced gentrification, which saw poor people move out of, say, Brooklyn’s Park Slope while Starbucks moved in and property prices soared.

From 2000 to 2009, however, the slum population climbed back to 8,735,395 (since then it probably rose even higher). A full 747 census tracts returned to slum status.

Click on to see the cities with the greatest increases in concentrated poverty. The South and the Midwest are leading the collapse.

(10) Hartford saw a 9.5% increase in people living in slums. The city itself is the 6th worst overall.

(9) Dayton Ohio had a 9.9% increase in slum population, and it's all because of poverty in the city.

(8) There was 10.5% increase in slums of the Poughkeepsie area, mostly in the suburbs. The city of Poughkeepsie actually improved.

(7) Slum numbers in New Haven increased 11.3%. It also has the worst suburban poverty rate in the nation.

(6) Jackson saw 12.2% more move into the slums. Nearly 20% of people in the city are in extreme poverty.

(5) There was a 13.2% increase in slum population in Detroit. 303,931 people in the area now live in extreme poverty.

(4) Slum population in Baton Rouge went up 13.5%. It is one of the areas that ranks in the top 10 for both city and suburban poverty increases.

(3) Slum population in the metro area increased 14.3%. Youngstown had the second biggest increase in slums among primary cities.

(2) El Paso saw a 14.5% increase of people in slums. However, concentrated poverty in the El Paso metro area is estimated to decrease in 2010.

(1) Toledo is the worst overall metro area, with a 15.3% increase in slums. Over 30% of the city is in poverty.

Life was improving in the '90s, but the new millennium brought increased population and poverty to America.

BONUS: Slums in Dallas grew 6.3%.

BONUS: Chicago saw a 4.4% increase of people living in slums. It now has the second largest population in extreme poverty.

BONUS: Atlanta improved 3.9%, with over 500 people moving out of poverty.

BONUS: New York City saw a 5.3% improvement. However, it still has the largest population in extreme poverty: 697,375 people.

BONUS: Los Angeles improved and slums decreased 6.5%. The L.A. suburbs had the 10th best improvement in the nation.

Most Americans are getting poorer, but some are getting richer

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