Can MTA turnstile data predict which neighborhood in NYC gets gentrified next?

Rent prices go up, and locals who can’t afford it move out. Gentrification is a hot topic in many of the United State’s biggest cities including San Francisco and New York as young professionals flock into “up and coming” neighborhoods for cheap rent. Now suddenly your tio, abuelo and auntie are affected by rising rent prices and artisanal coffee shops that serve no purpose —at least for them. But let’s take a deeper look into which neighborhoods in NYC have had the biggest and smallest changes in rent prices, and see which neighborhood could be next? Finally, as young professionals ourselves: who can afford these rent prices in the first place?

We begin with downloading the data from StreetEasy here: The data set takes a look at average rent prices for zipcodes and neighborhoods, divvied up by 1,2, and 3 bedroom apartments. We specifically looked at two bedroom apartments. Below are the top 10 neighborhoods with greatest total change in rent prices from 2010 to 2018.

Top 10 neighborhoods with change in rent prices.png

As you can see below, nearly all of the top 10 most gentrified neighborhoods are in Brooklyn, with some increasing about $1000 in monthly rent during a 8 year period.

Here are the 10 neighborhoods with least change in rent prices. Expectedly, a lot of them are neighborhoods in already pricey areas of Manhattan such as SoHo or Tribeca.

Bottom 10 neighborhoods with change in rent prices.png

The interesting thing to note here is that the neighborhoods with greatest income change are clustered in the same two general areas in NYC: Downtown Brooklyn and the Lower East Side. You can see this visually in the map below:

Now with the rent changes, let’s see if MTA turnstile volume data can show any correlation with which neighborhoods had rent increases during this same time period. Stay tuned for the next episode of Dragonball Z.

And Cacicazgo. :-)