The hip neighborhoods of America and beyond


Looking at the image before reading the entire piece made me think they were pointing out the hippest white and black neighborhoods, which did not make sense. FWIW, they’re wrong about Chicago. The supposed “W” neighborhood was hip 20 years ago and several other neighborhoods – all on the runners-up list – have gone through that coveted title in the intervening time.

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The ‘williamsburg’ of San Francisco is ‘Oakland’… Hmm… I don’t think that really counts…


This is a good example of why sample size matters. Most of these Williamsburgs are the result of asking only one person from that area. Not exactly a “vote”.


Where did the vintage Pittsburgh map come from? TinEye has failed me.

Unwashed heathen here, sorry. I get that Williamsburg is a part of Brooklyn that’s full of hipsters… but what is Bushwick?

Disagree? That’s fine. Tell us what we got wrong below the post.

"We spent 30 minutes coming up with putative data on a popular subject of argument, now fill our comments section with postings while giving us ad-views."


I’m pretty sure the Minneapolis Bushwick is Powderhorn. (I didn’t actually mean to reply to Ratel on this post, but let’s just say I’m choosing to argue about this here, instead.)

My grandfather was born (in the farmhouse where he lived in his entire life) within walking distance of Powderhorn Park. We used to go there to watch the Independence Day fireworks. Weird to think the place went from farm fields to “Bushwick” in only 120 years.

From the 30s to 50s, the hippest part of Pittsburgh was the Hill District which attracted jazz artists touring from Harlem to Chicago.

So Montreal’s Williamsburg and Montreal’s Bushwick are both Mile End.

I guess it’s not really a fair comparison, because there’s nowhere in Montreal as completely gentrified and uncool as Williamsburg.

Look again: Oakland is the Bushwick of San Francisco, and SF is the Williamsburg of Oakland.

Bushwick is a “bad neighborhood” that is currently in an early stage of gentrification, i.e. hipsterification. Bushwick 2014 is roughly Williamsburg 1995. It helps that it’s just east of East Williamsburg, so you can take the same train when you’re priced out to there.

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Actually that’s how they got the “data” in the first place - some of it is the result of a single, random comment. (Japantown is the hipster area of San Jose? Ha, ha. No.)

Wait, vintage ice cream? I don’t even

they pretty much nailed Atlanta. L5P is like the OG , it was a thing since before the NY Williamsburg was a thing (or at least a thing known outside of NY–I first heard of w’burg in like 98 but L5P was established by then.) East Atlanta was a Bushwick at the turn of the century and is now pretty much a Williamsburg. Old 4th Ward was definitely a Bushwick with a couple condos a few years ago but has since developed at a tremendous rate. Cabbagetown is like a W’burg, but all these neighborhoods pretty much border each other anyway. I’d say Castleberry Hill fits into the picture somehow as well.

As someone who has lived in one of the “hipster” neighborhoods on the list (and who has lived here for 20 years) I can say that it’s a mixed blessing. Yes, crime rates have gone down, my neighborhood has gotten “cooler” with nicer stores and better restaurants, but that also means the real vintage spots like the old time dairy “Kennedy Butter & Eggs”, and the straight-out-of-a-time-warp corner soda fountain that were here when I moved in are long gone, and rents have gone up, up, up.

So all of you that live in “Bushwicks”, enjoy it while you can.



You know. I looked up some (apparently ancient) data on Bushwick and found that it used to be a solid lower-middle-class blue collar area. Predominantly Puerto Rican. Low crime. Bedroom community for skilled workers and home for families.

And you know… that sounds pretty darn nice compared to a “bad neighborhood” or anything full of skinny jean wearing coffee sippers.


That describes virtually all of the recently-hip, newly-hip, or about-to-be-hip neighborhoods in Chicago. Only a few of them were rescued from real danger. Mostly, they just forced the relocation of working class families of color. How cool is that?