Jersey City, NJ

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The Jersey City Ghetto:

The Other Side of Jersey City Neighborhoods

One of New Jersey’s largest cities, the streets of the Jersey City ghetto has a diverse community with its own story separated from the rest of the state.

A city that has over 250,000 people living in Jersey City has the racial makeup being equally divided into four different groups, African-American, White, Latino, and Asian.

Jersey City’s white community mainly lives in the city’s Downtown area, together with a small Asian presence, who also resides in other areas around West Side Avenue or in the Heights.

The Latino community of the Jersey City ghetto is based in the Uptown area of the Heights, which is next to one of New Jersey’s biggest Hispanic areas, Bergenline Avenue.

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Another big area for Jersey City’s Latinos is the intersection of Pacific and Communipaw, while the Latino population is also scattered throughout other sections of the city.

The black population of the Jersey City ghetto resides largely south of Montgomery Street, in Jersey City’s Bergen-Lafayette and Greenville areas.


The Greenville neighborhood became a black community during the 1950s and 1960s as blacks were moving up north for employment opportunities.*

Before the transition of southern blacks occupying New Jersey, most black families lived in the historic Bergen-Lafayette neighborhood.*

Sadly, the majority of Hudson County’s problems, as far as poverty, are primarily located in Jersey City.

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At a 17% poverty rate, most of Hudson County’s poverty is concentrated in the Greenville community, as well as the areas of Jersey City’s housing projects.

The biggest Jersey City neighborhoods outside of blocks like Lexington, Bidwell, or Van Nostrand Ave, is the city’s housing projects as Jersey City formerly had over 10 housing complexes.

The city has currently six traditional projects, like Currie Woods, Montgomery Gardens aka Gunshot Towers, Booker T Washington aka Bullet Town, Marion Gardens, Holland Gardens, and Hudson Gardens.

Together with Currie Woods the city, through the HOPE VI program, has rebuilt and redeveloped a number of housing projects from Gloria Robinson Court / Duncan Projects to LGP / Lafayette Gardens.

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The majority of the housing projects that were built during the 1940s and the 1950s are now becoming privately owned and not operated by the city’s housing authority.

Today, many housing complexes have been rebuilt within the HOPE VI government funded program as newly developed apartments that are reducing the number of public housing units and residents.


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Note: All information is provided through people of the community, outside sources, and research. Some information might not be current and/or 100% accurate.

History of Jersey City Sources:
*Shalhoub, Patrick. “Jersey City”. Arcadia Publishing. 1995.