These Are The 10 Worst Detroit Neighborhoods For 2018


We used science and data to determine which Detroit neighborhoods are the real pits.

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Detroit’s neighborhoods conjure up too many stereotypes to count. You’ve got hipster areas, preppy places, neighborhoods where college kids thrive, and of course, ghettos.

It seems as if there’s a neighborhood for everyone in Detroit.

And while the city consistently ranks as one of the best places to live in the country thanks in part to a strong economy and tons of entertainment, it’s not all rainbows and sunshine in Detroit. Some neighborhoods aren’t as great as others.

So the question arises, which Detroit neighborhoods are the worst, and which are the best?

Today, we’ll use science and data to determine which Detroit hoods need a little tender loving care – the sore thumbs of the Detroit area if you will. Realistically, you can’t expect all the neighborhoods to be amazing, although Sherwood Forest ranks way above the rest.

We examined 91 of Detroit’s neighborhoods to find out the worst places to live. These ten places don’t quite measure up to Detroit’s reputation:

  1. Herman Gardens
  2. Chaldean Town
  3. Briggs
  4. Forest Park
  5. Petosky-Otsego
  6. Poletown East
  7. Brightmoor
  8. Oakwood Heights
  9. Kranz Woods
  10. English Village

Read on to see how we determined the places around Detroit that need a pick-me-up. And remember, don’t blame the messenger.

Once you’re done, you can look at the bottom of the story for a complete chart of every neighborhood we looked at from worst to best.

Looking for places to avoid outside of the city? You can also check out the worst suburbs of Detroit.

For more reading on Michigan, check out:

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How we determined the worst Detroit hoods

Worst Neighborhoods In Detroit

To figure out how bad a place is to live in, we only needed to know what kinds of things people like and then decide what places have the least amount of those things. We threw the following criteria into this analysis in order to get the best, most complete results possible. We used this set of criteria for each neighborhood in Detroit:

  • High unemployment (Less jobs)
  • Low median income (Less pay)
  • Low population density (No things to do)
  • Low home values (No one’s willing to pay to live here)
  • High crime (Estimated)

Then, we ranked each neighborhood in Detroit for each of these criteria from worst to best.

Next, we averaged the individual rankings for each criteria into a “Worst Score”.

The neighborhood with the lowest “Worst Score” ranks as the worst neighborhood of Detroit.

Read on below to learn more about these terrible places around Detroit to live. Or skip to the end to see the list of all 91 neighborhoods ranked from worst to best.

This list is a scientific analysis based on real data and is completely unbiased. Hold on to your pants.

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1. Herman Gardens

Population: 379
Median Income: $13,448
Median Home Value: $32,000

Built in 1943, Herman Gardens, known locally as “the Gardens”, had 2,144 units primarily within two-story multi-family buildings. The 129-unit Gardenview Senior building was on the Herman Gardens site.

The Gardens was located on the west side of Detroit at the southeast corner of the Joy Road and Southfield Freeway intersection close to what was then termed “some of the most affluent neighborhoods in the City of Detroit.” The Gardens were home to some notable individuals. Automobile giant John De Lorean, TV judge Greg Mathis, and classic Motown group The Spinners all called Herman Gardens home.

After problems had occurred in the buildings from the illegal drug trade in the early 1980s, the Detroit Housing Commission applied for HOPE VI funds under the 1996 NOFA, it intended to reduce the number of public housing units from 1,573 to 672. By August 1996, HUD had approved the demolition of 685 units using other funds, and the HOPE VI application proposed demolishing another 538 units. The application proposed renovating 274 of those existing units and building 222 new houses, along with 92 single-family houses and 84 duplexes, for a total of 672 units at the revitalized site.

2. Chaldean Town

Chaldean Town Detroit, MI

Population: 963
Median Income: $17,045
Median Home Value: $18,150

Chaldean Town is an historic Chaldean neighborhood in Detroit located along West Seven Mile Road in a segment in between Woodward Avenue to the west and John R St. to the east. Circa 2007 the population of the district was mainly low income elderly people and recent immigrants, who were mostly made up of Chaldeans. The neighborhood was usually just a stop point for newly arrived immigrants, who then typically preferred to move to the suburbs of Detroit once they gain financial well-being.

3. Briggs

Briggs Detroit, MI

Source: Public domain

Population: 1,533
Median Income: $13,746
Median Home Value: $29,433

North Corktown is a neighborhood in the city of Detroit. It is bounded roughly by I-75 on the south, Martin Luther King Jr Boulevard on the north, I-96 on the west, and the John C. Lodge Freeway on the east.

North Corktown was originally part of the Corktown neighborhood. This changed with the construction of I-75, which severed Corktown into two separate neighborhoods.

4. Forest Park

Population: 975
Median Income: $16,634
Median Home Value: $13,300

Forest Park houses the St Albertus Roman Catholic Church and the Detroit Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank. It is a highly desirable neighborhood valued for the fact that demolition of blighted properties, beginning in 2008, started here first. As such, many tracts of land remain sparsely populated with a low density of residents.

5. Petosky-Otsego

Population: 8,585
Median Income: $17,367
Median Home Value: $31,467

6. Poletown East

Population: 606
Median Income: $20,267
Median Home Value: $31,580

Poletown East is a neighborhood area of Detroit, Michigan bordering the enclave city of Hamtramck. The area was named after the Polish immigrants who originally lived in the area. A portion of residential area known as Poletown became the General Motors Detroit/Hamtramck Assembly plant in 1981 with those residents relocated by General Motors and the cities of Detroit and Hamtramck which claimed eminent domain in order to make way for a new automobile plant.

7. Brightmoor

Brightmoor Detroit, MI

Source: Public domain

Population: 9,811
Median Income: $24,121
Median Home Value: $31,350

Brightmoor is a roughly 4-square-mile neighborhood in Detroit, Michigan, near the northwest border of the city. Brightmoor is defined by the Brightmoor Alliance as being bordered by Puritan Road to the north, the CSX railway to the south, Evergreen Road to the east, and Outer Drive West, Dacosta Street, and Telegraph Road to the west. However, the demographics given here for the neighborhood are the city’s statistical Master Plan Neighborhood area, which consists of eight census tracts that includes some areas outside of the Alliance’s boundaries, but does not include some areas within its boundaries.

8. Oakwood Heights

Oakwood Heights Detroit, MI

Source: Public domain

Population: 492
Median Income: $28,833
Median Home Value: $17,500

Boynton and Oakwood Heights are the two southernmost neighborhoods of the city of Detroit, Michigan. According to the United States Census Bureau, the two neighborhoods occupy a total of 2.80 square miles. Boynton and Oakwood Heights had a combined population of 8,832 at the 2010 census, which was a 21.9% decrease from its population of 10,516 in 2000 census. The two occupy the entirety of the 48217 ZIP code.

Located in the heavily industrialized southwestern portion of Detroit, Boynton and Oakwood Heights are densely populated yet highly polluted by industries in and around the neighborhoods. In several articles published in July 2010, the Detroit Free Press ranked the neighborhoods of Boynton and Oakwood Heights as the most polluted ZIP code in Michigan.

9. Kranz Woods

Population: 4,090
Median Income: $16,655
Median Home Value: $34,620

Krainz Woods is a neighborhood in Detroit, Michigan.

The Sojourner Truth housing project is located there. The neighborhood was named after Captain John Krainz, a World War II hero from Detroit. Many Motown singing groups, such as The Dramatics and The Floaters, were from the Sojourner Truth housing projects. In 2009, Mayor of Detroit Dave Bing led a ribbon-cutting dedication of Krainz Park.

10. English Village

Population: 599
Median Income: $20,357
Median Home Value: $29,200

The ‘hoods around Detroit that are really hoods

Well there you have it — the worst of the neighborhoods in Detroit with Herman Gardens landing at the bottom of the pack.

As we mentioned earlier, the neighborhoods in Detroit aren’t all bad. Sherwood Forest takes the cake as the best place to live in Detroit.

We ranked the neighborhoods from worst to best in the chart below.

For more Michigan reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Worst Detroit Neighborhoods

Rank Neighborhood Population Median Income Median Home Values
1 Herman Gardens 379 $13,448 $32,000
2 Chaldean Town 963 $17,045 $18,150
3 Briggs 1,533 $13,746 $29,433
4 Forest Park 975 $16,634 $13,300
5 Petosky-Otsego 8,585 $17,367 $31,467
6 Poletown East 606 $20,267 $31,580
7 Brightmoor 9,811 $24,121 $31,350
8 Oakwood Heights 492 $28,833 $17,500
9 Kranz Woods 4,090 $16,655 $34,620
10 English Village 599 $20,357 $29,200
11 Milwaukee Junction 704 $17,322 $41,600
12 Riverdale 4,895 $25,153 $29,570
13 Westwood Park 746 $16,477 $34,600
14 Five Points 2,712 $25,858 $32,150
15 Weatherby 2,092 $26,439 $34,100
16 Van Steuban 6,100 $24,474 $33,050
17 Nw Goldberg 1,596 $14,964 $47,875
18 The Eye 3,443 $28,692 $29,375
19 Mcdougall-Hunt 968 $23,542 $34,900
20 Greensbriar 3,016 $31,882 $36,025
21 Carbon Works 737 $32,167 $27,600
22 Alden Park 491 $17,344 $68,500
23 Core City 3,359 $22,643 $44,800
24 Pulaski 5,563 $27,114 $33,350
25 State Fair Grounds 539 $14,503 $61,700
26 Lasalle Gardens 1,430 $23,870 $40,400
27 Franklin Park 10,422 $24,990 $35,436
28 Barton-Mcfarland 8,925 $25,983 $39,908
29 Warrendale 18,565 $27,435 $33,445
30 Conant Gardens 1,139 $28,603 $51,550
31 Lasalle College Park 3,179 $27,035 $42,975
32 Ravendale 2,317 $28,892 $37,860
33 Chandler Park 1,788 $24,945 $34,733
34 Fitzgerald 6,286 $22,281 $49,290
35 Minock Park 1,069 $21,754 $57,350
36 Conner Creek Ind 1,206 $23,626 $62,167
37 Fishkorn 3,325 $21,571 $53,720
38 Grandale 6,196 $27,599 $38,773
39 Elmwood Park 6,768 $18,924 $49,520
40 Old Redford 395 $35,560 $56,500
41 Springwells 13,760 $29,377 $37,950
42 Michigan-Martin 997 $23,500 $34,000
43 Southwest Detroit 14,956 $26,748 $37,845
44 Grixdale 1,008 $33,722 $48,550
45 Islandview 5,140 $25,585 $56,757
46 Eight Mile Wyoming 3,483 $25,865 $52,400
47 Hubbard-Richard 2,026 $31,948 $39,300
48 Jefferson Chalmers 5,969 $28,167 $55,786
49 Boynton 6,914 $26,013 $47,264
50 Blackstone Park 2,446 $17,040 $44,433
51 New Center 830 $20,776 $84,533
52 Gold Coast 280 $21,945 $49,800
53 Mohican Regent 2,885 $34,212 $36,475
54 Wayne State 3,651 $22,350 $61,050
55 Russell Woods 3,140 $37,484 $50,675
56 Marina District 242 $32,212 $158,700
57 Regent Park 4,614 $41,219 $50,011
58 Castle Rouge 2,126 $37,944 $40,950
59 East English Village 3,819 $37,743 $52,238
60 Brush Park 1,645 $31,650 $62,800
61 Downtown 4,399 $37,342 $31,260
62 Park 4,104 $43,395 $49,480
63 Virginia Park 2,117 $25,452 $75,433
64 Midtown 7,192 $19,523 $55,333
65 Berg-Lasher 4,379 $30,965 $62,320
66 Morningside 15,845 $35,214 $55,032
67 Green Acres 896 $38,843 $98,600
68 Lafayette Park 5,101 $24,280 $56,400
69 Grandmont-Rosedale 10,954 $34,435 $54,164
70 Millenium Village 1,179 $40,171 $86,100
71 Jefferies 1,210 $12,788 $96,300
72 Art Center 1,791 $31,560 $60,050
73 Aviation 3,890 $37,286 $56,175
74 Woodbridge 2,189 $41,324 $112,300
75 Martin Park 4,540 $40,253 $49,525
76 Bagley 12,087 $40,140 $59,413
77 Joseph Barry 416 $35,214 $114,650
78 Eliza Howell 939 $54,943 $50,950
79 Detroit Golf 1,433 $80,087 $179,340
80 Corktown 544 $41,688 $115,900
81 West Side Industrial 284 $47,449 $78,150
82 Rivertown 776 $44,844 $118,800
83 Grandmont 2,403 $48,695 $48,933
84 Belmont 2,256 $35,108 $63,850
85 West Village 1,100 $30,307 $56,600
86 University District 2,589 $91,180 $134,175
87 North Rosedale Park 5,051 $70,326 $74,625
88 Palmer Woods 791 $136,548 $328,200
89 Rosedale Park 3,346 $62,666 $70,875
90 Indian Village 1,581 $69,380 $220,350
91 Sherwood Forest 1,164 $97,083 $174,400