As a term, "gentrification" turned 50 last year. And while the real story of what it means for incomes (and rents, and home prices, and the cost of groceries) to rise in a given area is deeply personal, and neighborhood-specific, it helps to try to step back and look at it from a data-driven perspective. This month, a policy publication called Governing issued a giant report on gentrification, which parsed census tract data for the U.S.'s 50 largest cities. It "tested" each one for gentrification from 1990 to 2000, and then again from 2000 to the present, using a fairly detailed methodology, but it boils down to this: at the beginning of the decade in question, the tract had to be in the bottom 40th percentile in terms of income and median home prices when compared to the rest of the city.
To assess gentrification, growth rates were computed for eligible tracts' inflation-adjusted median home values and percentage of adults with bachelors' degrees. Gentrified tracts recorded increases in the top third percentile for both measures when compared to all others in a metro area. All of which is to say that if you see a dark blue area in the interactive maps, for either time span, it means that it started off relatively poorer and with relatively lower property values, and ended up on the other side.
Looking at the decade before the new millennium, the following neighborhoods stood out as "dark blue"a.k.a. gentrified. (Click on the maps to see them in a bigger size.)
↑ Midtown West
↑ Certain parts of Harlem
↑ Greenpoint, and Williamsburg
Then, let's take another look at the whole city map of 2000-Present data.
Here are the telltale gentrifying neighborhoods here.
↑ South Bronx
↑ West Harlem, and other parts of the neighborhood
↑ West Chelsea (thanks, High Line!)
↑ South Street Seaport, the Financial District, and the Lower East Side
↑ East Williamsburg, and Bushwick
↑ Red Hook
↑ Crown Heights and Prospect-Lefferts Gardens
↑ The Rockaways
Head over the Governing for the interactive maps and much more analysis.
· Gentrification in America Report [Governing]
· New York City Gentrification Maps and Data [Governing]
· Gentrification Report Methodology [Governing]
· Tracing the History of an Idea as Gentrification Turns 50 [Curbed]
· Illuminating New York City's Gentrification, One Story at a Time [Curbed]
· Gentrification Watch archive [Curbed]