Three Decade Difference in Life Expectancy Between Two Neighborhoods in One City

In the predominantly white and wealthy Streeterville neighborhood in Chicago, people can expect to live to the age of 90. In the neighborhood of Englewood, where the people are predominantly poor and black, life expectancy is just 60 years old. The vast life expectancy gap was found by recent analysis from the City Health Dashboard, published by NYU. 

According to analysis of data by researchers in the Department of Population Health at NYU School of Medicine, large life expectancy gaps were frequently found in cities with higher levels of racial and ethnic segregation.

Streeterville and Englewood have the most divergent life expectancy of any two neighborhoods in the same city in the US. The people in each neighborhood also have access to a very different quality of life.

The median income in Streeterville is nearly $100,000 a year, according to the US census. In Englewood, it’s a quarter of that. 

More than 80% of Streeterville residents have a college degree, compared with 8.2% in Englewood.

Englewood has long been known as one of Chicago’s most violent neighborhoods. Between 2000 and 2017 there were more than 4,800 shootings in Englewood.

Englewood also had one of the highest rates of residential lead contamination in the country for decades. Research shows that lead poisoning in children is associated with dramatic spikes in impulsiveness and aggression. Long-term exposure to lead has been linked to a number of illnesses.



Photo: “63rd Street Station” by Adam Moss is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0