5 Pennsylvania Towns People Are Fleeing as Soon as Possible

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Written By Blue & Gold NLR Team

 

 

 

 

Pennsylvania, with its rich history, diverse culture, and scenic beauty, houses towns that vary in attractiveness for residents. Some towns encounter significant difficulties such as high crime rates, low incomes, inadequate education, and environmental problems, prompting many inhabitants to seek better opportunities elsewhere. Here are five Pennsylvania towns experiencing a noticeable exodus.

Chester

Situated in Delaware County along the Delaware River, Chester, once a thriving industrial hub, has faced challenges like deindustrialization and urban decay. In 2019, it reported the state’s highest violent crime rate at 2,446 per 100,000 residents. Additionally, the median household income is the lowest at $29,954, with a poverty rate of 38.4% and an unemployment rate of 10.9%. The city’s population has declined by 8.3% since 2010, dropping from 33,972 to 31,118.

Johnstown

Located in Cambria County within the Allegheny Mountains, Johnstown, known for its steel industry and the 1889 flood, has suffered economic decline since the 1970s. With a median household income of $24,294, a poverty rate of 37.9%, and an unemployment rate of 9.4%, Johnstown’s population has decreased by 9.5% since 2010, falling from 20,978 to 18,994.

Duquesne

Found in Allegheny County along the Monongahela River, Duquesne, a once prosperous steel town, faced industry decline and job losses. With a median household income of $26,186, a poverty rate of 35.8%, and an unemployment rate of 11.1%, Duquesne’s population has decreased by 7.4% since 2010, from 5,565 to 5,152.

McKeesport

McKeesport, situated at the confluence of the Monongahela and Youghiogheny rivers in Allegheny County, shared a similar fate with Duquesne and Chester. It has the fourth-lowest median household income in the state, at $28,525, a poverty rate of 33.2%, and an unemployment rate of 9.8%. The city’s population has declined by 6.8% since 2010, from 19,731 to 18,398.

Reading

In Berks County’s southeastern part, Reading, once a manufacturing and railroad hub, has witnessed economic decline and social unrest. With the fifth-lowest median household income in the state, at $30,823, a poverty rate of 36.4%, and an unemployment rate of 8.7%, Reading’s population has decreased by 1.6% since 2010, from 88,082 to 86,712.

Conclusion

These five towns exemplify the challenges faced by numerous Pennsylvania communities in the 21st century, losing economic vitality, social cohesion, and quality of life. Residents, seeking improved prospects, are abandoning these towns. Urgent attention and intervention from state and federal governments, as well as the private and nonprofit sectors, are required to revitalize these communities and restore their former glory.

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