A Segregated Los Angeles

It is pretty obvious to anyone who lives in Los Angeles that our city is split solidly along economic lines as far as housing goes. Neighborhoods are normally either rich or poor with very few mixed income areas. Compare if you will Beverly hills with South Central LA, and you will see the vast disparity of income between the two. Of course there are many neighborhoods that buck the trend as they become gentrified like Downtown, Echo Park, Silverlake, but for the most part, neighborhoods are either rich or poor. It goes without saying that there are exceptions to these blanket statements, but a recent study by the people counters at Wayne State University in Detroit find that LA is the most “economically segregated region in the country”. From the LAT story:

More than two-thirds of L.A.-area residents live in neighborhoods that are solidly rich or poor, according to the analysis, which is based on 2000 census data. That share has been steadily growing for three decades, said one of the study’s authors, George Galster, a professor of urban affairs at Wayne State.

“The situation in L.A. is certainly at the extreme of American cities,” Galster said, adding that every one of the 100 metropolitan regions he looked at has grown more economically segregated over the last 30 years.