Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) - A New York Times map using the latest U.S. Census Bureau figures is breaking down poverty in America down to the city block.
With light blue representing smaller poverty rates, and dark blue vice–versa, Minnesota as a whole is experiencing relatively smaller rates than, for example, many southern states.
But when zoomed into Duluth, pockets of dark blue--or areas where at least 40% of people live below the poverty line--become more prevalent, especially in or around Downtown Duluth.
According to the map, one area between 20th Ave. E and 15th Ave. E is listed as experiencing a 45% poverty rate, or about 1,178 people living below the poverty line.
Among the biggest concentrations of poverty: the area between 15th Ave. E and 4th Ave. E below 4th St., which the map lists as experiencing a 61% poverty rate.
City officials say it's common to see concentrated poverty in areas where older, inexpensive housing options are present.
According to Mayor Don Ness, those options are in some of the city's oldest neighborhoods.
"...Lincoln Park, and in the Hillside neighborhoods," listed Mayor Ness, "so we do have higher concentrations of low income residents in these areas, and come with that come challenges."
Mayor Ness says part of the issue is having a low housing vacancy rate, which gives people looking for low–income housing little options other than concentrating the poverty in Duluth's older neighborhoods.