Philadelphia a city of extremes: High incomes, high poverty

Posted by United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey on January 7, 2020

Philadelphia is becoming more and more a city of extremes, with prosperity growing in some neighborhoods and poverty deepening in many others.

That’s the takeaway from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey (ACS) Five-Year Estimate for 2014 through 2018, released in late December.

The survey looks at poverty and median household income by neighborhood over five-year periods, and is considered to be the most granular and thorough federal report of socio-economic factors within communities.

Compared to the first Five-Year ACS, which covered 2005 through 2009 (including the recession years), the new report shows that incomes rose in 15 Philadelphia neighborhoods and fell in 39, including every section of the Northeast except Bridesburg.

At the same time, poverty decreased in 17 neighborhoods and jumped in 38 others.

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