New York City, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Detroit continue to lose black residents to “reverse migration.” According to the Chicago Crusader, black residents are moving out of the aforementioned major cities and flocking to the likes of Atlanta, Houston, and Charleston, S.C.
The outlet complied U.S. Census data, along with its own survey, which shows that the nation’s four largest cities with the highest black populations, experienced a steady decline since 2013. Gentrification and gun violence, are to blame for shrinking black populations among the same major cities that blacks migrated to from the South, between 1916 and the 1960s.
In Detroit, formerly the nation’s third-largest predominately black city, the black population dropped from 82 percent in 2010, to 80 percent in 2015, and 79 percent in 2016.
New York City experienced similarly small but consistent changes within its black population, which dipped to 22.8 percent, down from 28 percent in 2010. Harlem, once considered a bustling black cultural mecca, has been caught in the grips of gentrification for years. Blacks account for 28 percent of Harlem’s 402,961 residents, the Crusader reports.
In Philadelphia, one of the nation’s most segregated cities, the black populations make up 41 percent of the city’s more than 1.5 million residents. The number is slightly down from 42 percent in 2010.
In Chicago, more than 14,000 black residents left Cook County between 2016 and 2017. Chicago has seen 61,000 resident leave annually, a population dwindle that has the Windy City on the brink of dropping from third- to fourth-largest U.S. city (Houston is expected to best Chicago’s population by 2025).
The changing urban landscape, likely driven in part by a lower cost of living in the South, will help Atlanta become the nation’s sixth largest city within the next 20 years. According to Forbes, ATL and Washington D.C. tied for the metro cities where black residents have the highest median income.
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