Here are the five most affluent neighborhoods in the United States in 2014-2018, according to my recently-calculated Yost index. These block groups had median gross rent between $2,845 and $3,501, median household income between $245,000 and $250,001, median home value between 1.2 and 1.4 million, poverty rate of zero, zero unemployment, percent in blue-collar occupations between 0 and 20%, and number of years of school completed between 15.8 and 16.0.
Note that the American Community Survey top-codes median gross rent and median household income so that $3,501 should be interpreted as “above $3,500” and $250,001 as “above $250,000”. 16.0 is the maximum years of school completed, corresponding to every person surveyed having a four-year college degree.
In reality, there are hundreds of block groups with these characteristics and the responses from a single household can make the difference between being in the top 0.002% and merely elsewhere in the top 1%. Still, it was an interesting exercise to see which block groups fell at the extreme end of the rankings, and to see that five different states were represented. In a future post I will similarly review the five most deprived neighborhoods.
- Tract 153, Block Group 4, Manhattan. This area on Manhattan’s Upper West Side adjacent to Lincoln Center would not seem to jump out as the city’s most affluent spot, but keep in mind the census makes no distiction between median incomes of $250,001 and median incomes of $1,000,000. This block group is home to New York City’s only public school that teaches music as a daily core subject.
- Tract 4124, Block Group 2, Houston, Texas. This neighborhood of single-family homes in the small Houston suburb of West University Place, which includes the incongruously named Robinhood Street, may not look like stereotypical mansions, but the Wikipedia entry for the city confirms it is among the municipalities with the highest wealth concentration in the country.
- Tract 2154, Block Group 5, St. Louis, Missouri. This census tract in the St. Louis suburb of Ladue is the site of the St. Louis Country Club, the host of many professional golf tournaments before it broke ties with the United States Golf Association in the early 1990s over its refusal to admit any Black members.
- Tract 41, Block Group 3, Seattle, Washington. This census tract includes the Windermere neighborhood of Seattle. While part of the city, it has its own separate rules and covenants and a private park and beach with a $3,000 initiation fee.
- Tract 405.04, Block Group 3, Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The Galt Ocean Mile neighborhood – known simply as “The Mile” – is crammed with high-rise beachfront condominiums like these.
All photos are screen captures from Google Maps.