Historically black wards turning white

Population changes by ward, 2000-2010The Chicago Reader’s Ben Joravsky looked at Rob Paral’s new Census mashups and the results of the spring elections to see how Chicago’s 50 wards — and the people who represent them — are changing:

As we all know, the city’s been systematically demolishing the high-rises for the last two decades. With the projects demolished, local property values go up and many nearby homeowners and renters are forced to move.

In their place—at least in some wards—have come white residents.

In the Third Ward—which includes such gentrifying near-south-side neighborhoods as Bronzeville, Douglas, and Oakland—the black population fell by 12.4 percent and the white one rose 46.7 percent over the past decade, according to Paral’s analysis.

Even more dramatically, in the 27th Ward—which stretches from the near-north side to the west side—the black population fell 32 percent and the white one rose 83.6 percent.

That means that aldermen Pat Dowell (Third) and Walter Burnett (27th) are representing roughly double the percentage of white constituents than existed in the ward ten years ago. The Third Ward is now 9 percent white, up from 4 percent ten years ago, and the 27th is 32 percent white, up from 17.

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