USC Neighborhood

South Los Angeles, formerly and still popularly South Central Los Angeles, is a 51.08-square-mile region of Los Angeles County, California, comprising 25 neighborhoods within the city of Los Angeles and three unincorporated districts.

Population and ethnicity

In/by the end of the 1980s, South Los Angeles had an increasing number of Hispanics and Latinos, mostly in the northeastern section of the region. But it was not until the 1990s when Hispanic immigrants from Central America began arriving in substantial numbers to buy or rent apartments and houses, most of which were vacated by African Americans. In 1970, nearly 700,000 African-American residents called Los Angeles home. However, in the twenty-year period between 1990 to 2010, the city lost over 125,000 black residents, a number that continues to dwindle as more African-American families seek opportunities elsewhere. Nonetheless, South Los Angeles remains home to the largest black community in the Western United States.

“Between 1970 and 1990 the South LA area went from 80% black and 9% Latino to 50.3% black and 44% Latino.” This massive and rapid residential demographic change occurred as resources in the area were shrinking due to global economic restructuring described above and due to the federal government’s decrease in funding of urban anti-poverty and jobs programs, and other vital social services like healthcare. The socio-economic context described here increased the perception and the reality of competition amongst Asians, blacks, and Latinos in South LA. The results from the 2000 census which show continuing demographic change coupled with recent economic trends indicating a deterioration of conditions in South LA suggest that such competition will not soon ease.”

In the 2000 census, the area of South Los Angeles had a population of 520,461. Roughly 55% of the residents were Hispanic or Latino, while more than 40% were African American.

The “Mapping LA” project of the Los Angeles Times reported that in 2000 the neighborhood had a population of 749,453 in 2000 in its 51.08 square miles, divided into 28 neighborhoods, with 14,671 people per square mile. The ethnic breakdown was Latino, 56.7%; African American, 38%; white, 2.2%; Asian, 1.6% and other, 1.5%. Despite the decline African-Americans continue to form a majority in Leimert Park, Baldwin Hills, Crenshaw, Ladera Heights, View Park-Windsor Hills, Gramercy Park, Chesterfield Square, Manchester Square and Hyde Park. Together these neighborhoods have a population of 125,321 that is roughly 70% African-American as of the 2010 census.

Notable people

South Los Angeles has been the home of many celebrities such as Dr. Dre, Ice Cube, Tyrese Gibson, Ice T, Ahmad Jones, Florence Griffith-Joyner, Andre Miller, and Edward L. Doheny, oil tycoon.

Shoreh Merati

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