Cities are, of course, the main generators of a nation's wealth...
...[T]his map built by Reddit user Alexandr Trubetskoy shows — in stark terms — how much of the country's economic activity (as measured by the gross domestic product) is focused in a remarkably small number of major cities.
The case for big cities, in one map http://t.co/NziAt8vDRu pic.twitter.com/kYv0FHVYC8 via @TheFix
— David Beard (@dabeard) February 19, 2014
But a recent study has shown that the most prosperous cities tend to have the greatest income inequality. Seattle is one of these cities..
The country’s big cities tend to have higher income inequality than the country as a whole. For instance, in the 50 biggest American cities in 2012, a high-income household — which the study measured at the 95th earnings percentile, putting it just into the top 5 percent — earned about 11 times as much as a low-income household, at the 20th percentile. Nationally, that ratio was 9 to 1.
The article opens by saying something that appears to be startling: If one wants to live in a more equal community, the place to go is a city whose economy is not growing. But this story lead is not as provocative as it sounds. To appreciate its substance one only has to look back to last week's popular posts and articles about how a black neighborhood in Portland rejected the convenience of a Trader Joe's grocery store precisely because many feared it would bring economic growth (or development), and this growth would attract the unstoppable forces of gentrification—a process that always leads to greater and greater income inequality in a neighborhood and, ultimately, a city.