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Are Whites Leaving Philadelphia?
  by: iradiotom - Philadelphia, PA
started: 06/03/11 3:16 pm | updated: 06/03/11 3:16 pm
According to a report released this week by the Pew Charitable Trust's Philadelphia Research Initiativean, there has been an overall decline of the white population in Philadelphia over the past two decades.

The report states the city's white population dropped by 263,254 people, from 1990 to 2010, representing a larger population decrease "than the entire population of Buffalo, N.Y."

Northeast Philadelphia, particularly the lower Northeast, saw a significant drop in whites. The Northeast declined from 92 percent white in 1990 to 58.3 percent white in 2010. At the same time, the black, Hispanic and Asian populations grew.

The Pew report was based on census data from 1990 to 2010 compiled by Michelle Schmitt, project coordinator at Temple University's Metropolitan Philadelphia Indicators Project, who examined the data by ZIP codes.

"In 1990, Philadelphia was a city understood largely in terms of white and black," said the report, authored by Larry Eichel, project director of the Philadelphia Research Initiative.

"At the time, it was a majority-white city with a large black minority and small groups of Hispanics and Asians. Two decades later, it is a plurality-black city with a large but dwindling white minority and rapidly expanding contingents of Hispanics and Asians."

The white decline is "mostly driven by mobility" as opposed to changes in fertility or death rates, said Emilio Parrado, associate director of the Population Studies Center at the University of Pennsylvania.

Whites have been moving to the suburbs for "better schools, bigger houses," he said. And some have been lured to the South for jobs.
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