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Where Have All the Middle-Class Neighborhoods Gone?
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February 15, 2013
In 1970, two-thirds of Americans lived in middle-income neighborhoods, according to the US2010 research project. Now it's less than half, and the proportion of poor and rich neighborhoods has doubled. On the map to the right, you can watch middle-income neighborhoods (the lighter colors) be gobbled up by the red (affluent) and blue (poor) neighborhoods over time.
It's not just that rising income inequality is depleting the middle class that would fill those middle class neighborhoods, according to Sean Reardon, one of the US2010 researchers who provided us the maps. Americans are sorting themselves by income more than ever.
Today on "The Lines Between Us," we'll explore income segregation with Reardon and with Jennifer Arndt Robinson, who has decided to stay in a neighborhood near Patterson Park even though her family could afford to "move out to the county."
Below, you can see an animated map of the area around Patterson Park. Jennifer's first house was in the bottom right corner of the four Census tracts. Her second house was on the line between the top left and bottom left.