What US City's Bad Neighborhoods are the Least Bad?

Well as mentioned above, North Las Vegas is not the northern part of LV but an independent city. And in some areas, you have to look at the metro area vs. the city proper, and those can be hard to tell apart.

The Tenderloin is higher on property crimes, drugs, etc. You are less likely to wander into a driveby. It’s the only place where I’ve been involved in getting a car stolen. Although I don’t think it was parked in Tenderloin proper, but in SF that doesn’t matter, as you can walk two block and switch from good neighborhood to bad, and walk three more and you’re back in a decent neighborhood.

Yeah, I guess most people consider Geary St the northern border between the Tenderloin and Lower Nob Hill (the TenderNob or Nobberloin, I’ve heard it called). Geary runs into Union Square with the high end stores and boutiques and tourists, and a few blocks west you’ll see people taking dumps on the sidewalk on top of the discarded needles. I agree it’s mostly non-violent crime compared to something like SE D.C. and P.G. just over the city line.

My WAG is some sort of larger Midwestern college town. The “bad neighborhoods” could be limited to a handful of trailer parks on the edge of town, and that one block of dive bars where the undergrads get drunk and start fights.

Economically, you’d probably want to find such a town that has a thriving tech/spinoff industry. You’d want to avoid cities with a recently collapsed manufacturing industry that left behind a lot of impoverished, unskilled, and unemployed people.

I’ll throw out Madison, WI as a possible example, though I’ve only visited it once and definitely don’t know anything about its dodgy neighborhoods.

When I lived there, Salt Lake City was a remarkably safe place, with no really “bad” parts of town. There was some crime, but it wasn’t awful, or confined to any particular region. I don’t know if things have changed significantly since I’ve been gone, and the Olympics reshaped the town. I see that SLC is on [MikeS’s list of cities without high inequality.

The ghetto in San Diego was fairly tame compared to some other large cities.

This always amazes me…in many cities, there are good areas right next to the slums.
Why don’t any of the homeless/addicts/muggers, etc walk for 3 minutes to a nicer neighborhood before they shit on the sidewalk or rob somebody?

Usually there’s no obvious police presence in the good area, and I’ve never seen,say, a cop parked full-time at the “border”. Even in the bad ol’ days of high-crime New York in the 1980’s, Harlem started at (I think) 120th street, and nobody dared cross it… but 5 blocks away was okay.
I don’t get it. Is there a reason? Something I’m missing?

I’ve seen that list a lot lately (I live in Indy, which is listed twice on that list). It’s metrics are just weird. I know they tried to be very objective about it, but neighborhood density just plays way too much into it. The two areas it listed in Indy are not good - I certainly don’t want to live there, and there’s not much in terms of any upcoming development there either. But I’ve been to FAR worse areas in cities that aren’t anywhere on that list. I think it’s a decent tool, and it highlights things that should be eye-opening to the city planners that are responsible, but it comes up short in comparing city-to-city.

Which Springfield? As every Simpsons fan knows, there’s a Springfield in every US State.

Now I see you are talking about Illinois. Come on down here to East St. Louis. There isn’t a block in Springfield, IL as bad as the best ESL neighborhood.

Detroit as a whole is cesspool of crime but there are some neighborhoodsthat are actually fairly safe relatively speaking. Actually another one of them is Mexican-town (by the bridge to Canada in dark blue). Apparently you don’t go around committing crimes in your suppliers restaurant district.

From personal experience I can say the worst parts of Utah are pretty much nothing to be afraid of. There is a bit of crime and such but no one who had been in a real metro area would be afraid.

Seattle, while worse than Utah in terms of crime and danger is still relatively tame, but lately has gotten a little worse in some neighborhoods like Belltown, White Center, and areas of Tacoma.

The Tenderloin isn’t that bad, but there’s worse in SF. I certainly wouldn’t wander around Hunter’s Point late at night.

Well, Plano isn’t often thought of as a large city. Most people think of it as an affluent Dallas suburb. But it has nearly 300,000 people and an insignificant murder rate.

It’s VERY hard to afford a house in Plano, so even the “poorer” parts aren’t very poor.

That doesn’t mean there’s no crime- rich kids do a lot of drugs, and there are a lot of burglaries because there’s plenty of good stuff to steal!

Now, if you want to look at larger cities that DO have a a fair number of poor people but still don’t have MUCH serious violent crime… look at El Paso, Texas. The murder rate there is very low- something like 3.3 murders per 100,000 people in a calendar year.

My home, Austin, also has a very low violent crime rate- just a tad higher than El Paso’s.

Boston’s bad neighborhoods aren’t that bad, crime-wise, compared to most major US cities. I haven’t lived in Boston for years, but I visit regularly, and when I do I go to church in a fairly poor, majority Black neighborhood. I’ve never felt unsafe. (I have had stuff stolen and seen robberies happen, but only in the ‘nicer’ more expensive areas).
Re: My WAG is some sort of larger Midwestern college town.

Most large Midwestern college towns seem to have their share of industrial-urban decay, in my experience. Though for example, East Lansing is quite safe, Lansing next door is…quite the contrary.

San Jose. There are three 'bad" neighborhoods One is the East side, but mainly that’s just lower middle class and Hispanic. I’d lock my door, but not put bars on the windows. Walking is safe. Talk to your kids about gangs, colors, etc.

Downtown has a lot of homeless in some areas. Locked door, fence, and don’t walk alone in some areas at night.

Then there’s a tiny little area where all the gang-bangers seem to live- Seven Trees. Stay out at all costs. Wearing the wrong color shirt could get you killed. But then again, it’s very small area, and you can’t really just wander in.


“ahem…I grew up in a bad neighborhood…”
“How bad was it?”
“Ski masks were on back order.”

ba da bump :stuck_out_tongue:

Yeah, I’ve been warned about Hunter’s Point. I wasn’t familiar with it when I moved to SF and a friend here from back home said “Think East Baltimore”.

I think the Tenderloin is sort kept in check because it is in the middle of the city and bordering Market St and Union Square and City Hall. I recently saw some blog article by a New Yorker who had to move to SF for his job and he was complaining it was like someone had dropped part of the Bronx in the middle of Lower Manhattan. It’s seedy, but I don’t think it’s that unsafe.