There are lots of people who throw the term ‘ghetto’ around. But which of the largest cities in America are the most ghetto of all?
How do you decide if a place is ghetto or not? You ask the internet. According to the Urban Dictionary, a ghetto is defined as:
“urban; of or relating to (inner) city life” and “poor; of or relating to the poor life.”
Using that criteria, it’s not hard to scrape the internet, run some scientific data on where ghettos might exist, and then put out a list.
After analyzing the largest cities in America with a population over 100,000, we came up with this list as the most ghetto places to live in the good ole US of A:
- Cleveland (Photos)
- Miami (Photos)
- Detroit (Photos)
- Hartford (Photos)
- Dayton (Photos)
- San Bernardino (Photos)
- Birmingham (Photos)
- St. Louis (Photos)
- Jackson (Photos)
- Brownsville (Photos)
In case you’re wondering, the city of Naperville, Illinois is the least ghetto city of all 270 we measured.
Read on below to see where your city ranks and why. Or feel free to check out the most dangerous cities in America.
What ghetto criteria did we use?
In order to rank the most ghetto places in America, we had to determine what criteria defines a ghetto city or neighborhood.
Since a ghetto is defined as a poor area, we used income levels, crime and education levels as a guide to determine where the most broke citizens of a state live.
Additionally, the staples of inner city life include cheap and discounted retail outlets.
We started by making a list of all cities in America that are listed on the 2011-2015 American Community Survey with over 100,000 people. That left us with 269 cities to rank.
We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using Yelp and Area Vibes, this is the criteria we used:
- Household income levels
- High school graduation rates
- Number of convenience stores
- Number of drug stores
- Number of discount stores
Note: For the sake of getting reliable numbers, we counted places within a city’s border, as well as within a short driving distance.
All of these results are listed in a per capita basis. Meaning number of stores per person in a state. Additionally, high school graduation rates are determined by looking at the total number of people who live in a city who have no graduated from high school, not the current graduation rate of an area’s high schools.
Median Income: $26,179 (3rd worst)
Crime Per Capita: 6.8% (19th worst)
Median Income: $30,858 (8th worst)
Crime Per Capita: 5.9% (40th worst)
Median Income: $26,095 (2nd worst)
Crime Per Capita: 6.8% (18th worst)
Median Income: $29,313 (5th worst)
Crime Per Capita: 5.3% (59th worst)
Median Income: $28,174 (4th worst)
Crime Per Capita: 6.4% (23rd worst)
6. San Bernardino
Median Income: $38,774 (40th worst)
Crime Per Capita: 5.3% (61st worst)
Median Income: $31,217 (9th worst)
Crime Per Capita: 8.2% (5th worst)
8. St. Louis
Median Income: $34,800 (26th worst)
Crime Per Capita: 7.9% (6th worst)
Median Income: $33,080 (17th worst)
Crime Per Capita: 6.9% (16th worst)
Median Income: $32,288 (13th worst)
Crime Per Capita: 4.4% (109th worst)
Now You’re Full Ghetto
If you’re measuring the locations in America where there are a high number of poor and uneducated residents, this is an accurate list.
Detailed List Of The Most Ghetto Cities In America
|63||Salt Lake City|
|66||West Palm Beach|