City Paper is not for tourists
The conservative Manhattan Institute has a study out that describes the “end of the segregated century.” A lot of stats aren’t a surprise: There are very few all-white neighborhoods left in the U.S., cities are more integrated than they’ve been in 100 years, and gentrification and immigration have reduced segregation in cities, but not as much as black people heading for the suburbs.
Of special interest to us however, is the section on Washington, D.C., where, the authors explain, integration has happened in black neighborhoods:
Washington, D.C.’s Navy Yard neighborhood has witnessed rapid change, from 95 percent black in 2000 to 31 percent black in 2010, as redevelopment led to a 50 percent increase in population. A more gradual process of racial change is occurring in the city’s northwest quadrant, where several neighborhoods have seen a 25 percent drop in the proportion of black residents over the past decade. This area represents the forefront of a wave of gentrification that began in Georgetown some decades ago and has crept steadily eastward since.
The “untipping” of a handful of neighborhoods near the city center is accompanied by the more numerous regions of African-American Washington where no trace of gentrification exists. In 2000, the District of Columbia contained 17 census tracts—with 46,796 inhabitants among them—that were more than 98 percent black. As of 2010, every single one of them remained more than 95 percent black. Gentrification in Washington, as elsewhere, has occurred primarily at the fringe of the ghetto.
And, more than that, D.C. is desegregating more slowly than other cities. Based on Census data, neither the larger black tracts nor D.C.’s whiter neighborhoods west of Rock Creek Park are integrating very much.
Photo by Eric Fischer via Flickr/Creative Commons Attribution Generic 2.0 License