The last time I toured @NPR’s Washington, DC headquarters was in 2013, after which I wrote this post:
Photo and Map Friday: The Social Determinants of the NoMa Neighborhood, Washington, DC USA
At the time, depending on which way you looked from the 7th floor (East or West), you saw a dramatically different view of the social determinants of health. NPR’s headquarters happen to sit on the border of several census tracts, 47.01, 47.02, and 106.
Washington, DC has changed a lot since then – we just crossed 700,000 residents, which doesn’t exceed the all time high of 800,000 in 1950, however, it’s a new record for us.
With Leah and Kooper joining this week, DC is now 7️⃣0️⃣0️⃣,0️⃣0️⃣0️⃣ residents strong!
Whether you have been here 5 minutes like these little ones or 5 generations like me, we can all be #DCProud of this milestone.
📺 https://t.co/HKapkrP7NJ #DC700K 💪🏾 pic.twitter.com/7ialEyuk0q
— Muriel Bowser (@MurielBowser) February 24, 2018
I decided to take a look at the changes between then and now, courtesy of a few helpful resources, including the amazing @DCPolicyCenter as well as the similarly amazing @CommunityCommon.
Palpable demographic changes
As can be seen in the map comparing 1970 to 2015, Washington, DC is no longer majority Black or African American (See: Goodbye to Chocolate City – D.C. Policy Center).
The DC Policy Center analysis is much more robust than mine is (they’re led by a talented economist, I’m just a doctor…). I did a comparison of just the data available in 2013 to the data available now, encompassing two American Community Surveys, 2009-2013 and 2012-2016:
- There are more Black of African American people living in census tract 47.01, but less by percentage
- There are many less African American people living in census tract
Thanks for publishing my photo, in Goodbye to Chocolate City (Demographic Changes & Segregation Indices) – D.C. Policy Center
Above is 2018, below is 2013, taken from two floors higher in the building (in 2018, tours don’t go up to the 7th floor).
Click to enlarge.
I did a back of the electronic mapping system analysis (thanks, @CommunityCommon), which shows that across the census tracts in this area, there are proporptionately less Black or African American people, even if in some tracts there are more people by number. Click to enlarge.
In addition, the poverty level has gone down, the educational level has gone up, on both sides of the NPR Headquarters building:
Here’s 2013’s map:
Our cities are changing
There’s no mistaking what’s happening, the photographs tell the story, assisted by maps. This is the NoMa neighborhood. A more comprehensive narrative has been written by the Shaw neighborhood:
Thoughts and photos from the gilded ghetto | Race, Class, and Politics in the Cappuccino City, by Derek Hyra
As well as article after article about every other neighborhood in Washington, DC:
Thanks for publishing my photos, Bisnow, in One Big Question For U Street/Shaw: How To Preserve Its Identity
Washington, DC continues to be the most important learning lab for understanding how to provide all people what they need.