The 5 Most Worst Neighborhoods in Broward County, Florida

Broward County, located in South Florida and home to nearly 2 million residents across 30 cities, exhibits a stark contrast in its neighborhoods. While some areas boast safety, affluence, and an excellent quality of life, others grapple with issues like crime, poverty, and social challenges.

This article delves into the five most distressed neighborhoods in Broward County, as determined by the Distressed Communities Index (DCI), which assesses the economic well-being of communities nationwide. The DCI considers seven key factors: high school education levels, housing vacancies, unemployment, poverty rates, median income disparities, employment changes, and business establishment trends. A higher DCI score signifies greater community distress.

5. North Lauderdale

North Lauderdale, with a population of around 43,000, is situated centrally in Broward County. Conceived in 1963 as an ambitious urban development project by architect Morris Lapidus, known for designing iconic Miami Beach hotels, North Lauderdale fell short of its vision as a modern and glamorous city. Instead, it became a low-income, high-crime area, earning a DCI score of 70.9.

The city grapples with high poverty (19.8%), unemployment (11.9%), and housing vacancies (12.9%). Its median income ratio stands at a mere 0.64, indicating residents earn significantly less than the Florida average.

4. Lauderhill

Lauderhill, home to approximately 71,000 residents in central Broward County, was founded in 1959 by developer Herbert Sadkin. The city got its name from Herbert’s friend, Lauralee, wife of New York real estate magnate William Zeckendorf. Lauderhill boasts a substantial Caribbean population, particularly Jamaicans, constituting around 36% of its inhabitants.

With a DCI score of 71.4, Lauderhill faces considerable distress, marked by high poverty (21.9%), unemployment (12.7%), and housing vacancies (15.1%). Its median income ratio is just 0.62, signifying residents earn well below the state average.

3. Lauderdale Lakes

Lauderdale Lakes, a city of approximately 35,000 residents in central Broward County, was initially envisioned in 1961 as a retirement haven for senior citizens. However, over time, it evolved into a predominantly African American community, with approximately 77% of its population identifying as Black.

Lauderdale Lakes possesses a DCI score of 72.7, signifying substantial distress. The city contends with high poverty (24.7%), unemployment (13%), and housing vacancies (16%). Its median income ratio stands at 0.59, indicating residents’ earnings significantly lag behind the Florida average.

2. West Park

West Park, a city housing roughly 15, 000 residents in the southern part of Broward County, emerged as the county’s newest city in 2005, following residents’ decision to incorporate their unincorporated neighborhoods into a municipality. West Park boasts a diverse population, with approximately 48% Black, 37% Hispanic, and 12% White residents.

With a DCI score of 74, West Park faces significant distress, marked by high poverty (25%), unemployment (14%), and housing vacancies (17%). Its median income ratio is just 0.57, signifying residents earn well below the state average.

Conclusion

Broward County is a large and diverse county that offers many opportunities and attractions for its residents and visitors. However, it also has many challenges and disparities that affect the well-being and quality of life of its communities. By using the Distressed Communities Index (DCI), we can gain insight into the economic situation and social conditions of different neighborhoods in Broward County and identify areas that need more attention and support.

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