Gentrification of the black neighbourhood

The gentrification of the black neighbourhood is happening all over America

 

As demographic data from the 2010 census starts to come in, it will show a startling trend - cities that have long been the African American capitals of the US are undergoing drastic change. On the south side of Chicago, in New York's Harlem, across New Orleans and in Washington DC, the black population is in rapid decline. The numbers are particularly startling in Washington, DC - a city that was once so thoroughly black it gained the name "Chocolate City". In 1970, blacks made up over 70 percent of the district's population. Today, African Americans represent less than 54 per cent of the population and demographers predict they will be a minority in the next five to 10 years. The most common explanation for the displacement is gentrification, and the rising cost of living that comes with the new, generally white, population. Even as a black family occupies the most important residence in DC for the first time in history, "Chocolate City" is having an identity crisis. Al Jazeera goes to the neighbourhoods of the nation's capital where long time black Washingtonians question their future in a city with centuries of rich African American past.