Saturday, December 02, 2006

Racial Dividing Lines in Brooklyn

In an article looking at Ratner's Atlantic Yards project through the prism of race, the New York Times produced the above map of racial distributions in central Brooklyn.

Flatbush Ave cleaves black and white Brooklyn, with much of the area to the northeast of Flatbush more than 50% or 75% black, and much of the area to the southwest of Flatbush more than 50% or 75% white. Areas of downtown Brooklyn, Fort Greene, Prospect Heights, and Gowanus are "diverse," meaning neither blacks nor whites make up more than 50% of the population.

I would love to see data comparing changes in neighborhood racial demographics to changes in what neighborhood an area is called. The area considered Park Slope several years ago pushed below 5th Avenue, and is now creeping below 4th Avenue, if not further. The map shows that this corresponds to a diverse area that is becoming more white. Similarly, will the dividing line between Crown Heights and Prospect Heights continue to move west, paralleling the movement by whites into a neighborhood that had been almost exclusively black?

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