Maps and Demographics

South End/Lower Roxbury Boundaries

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The boundaries of the combined South End and Lower Roxbury area follow the Southwest Corridor Park and Orange Line tracks from Back Bay Station to the Roxbury Crossing Station and then follow New Dudley Street/Malcom X Boulevard through Dudley Square along Dudley Street past St. Patrick’s Church and then down Magazine Street to Massachusetts Ave. The boundary then goes back up Massachusetts Avenue to the Melnea Cass Boulevard intersection and follows the connecting road, General Pulaski Skyway, to Route 93 north and then to the Massachusetts Turnpike (Rt. 90 and Herald Street) until it passes near the Back Bay Station. The Boston Redevelopment Authority has defined the South End to include much of this area down to Melnea Cass Boulevard as the southwest boundary. Before Melnea Cass Boulevard was built most of the area between Massachusetts Avenue and New Dudley/Dudley Street was popularly known as Lower Roxbury and was not split by the highway. During much of the 19th century, the boundary between Boston and Roxbury was between Kendall and Hammond Street and along Ball Street. The South End Landmark Historic District covers most of the area between the Southwest Corridor Park and Harrison Avenue, and between the Massachusetts Turnpike and Camden Street (except Castle Square, etc.). References to the South End alone will normally mean the BRA-defined South End since many demographic statistics are compiled for that area.



















Race and Ethnicity of the Youth Population

The distribution of youth is uneven across the South End/Lower Roxbury area, and the concentration of various racial and cultural groups is higher in some census tracts than others. Census Tract 805 in Lower Roxbury has by far the largest number of 10-19 year olds (636). Tract 705 in the center of the South End has the second-highest number of youth. 54% of the study area’s Hispanic youth are concentrated in just three census tracts: 705,805, 709. Most (71%) Asian youth live in census tracts 704 and 705, which includes Castle Square and the adjacent area in central South End. There are large numbers of African American youth in census tracts 805, 707, 709, and 804. The total number of youth in the South End declined by 16.3% from 1990 to 2000, with both white youth and minority youth declining in numbers. Most of the decline was in African American youth (-571), Asian youth (-208), and white youth (-116), while the number of Hispanic youth remained about the same.















The percent of families in poverty varies widely in this area between census tracts. In a few areas the rate is around 7%, while in other areas it is over 30%. Nine of the 14 census tracts have more than 25% of the families below the poverty line. Overall, 1,604 families or 24.5% of the total are below the poverty level. This rate is more than 3.5 times the state percentage and 2.5 times the national rate of family poverty. One reason the rate is high is that many major subsidized housing developments are located in the area. The Boston Housing Authority owns 14 developments in the South End/Lower Roxbury and several other major affordable housing developments are located here. The rate of poverty among nonfamily householders is higher than the rate among families in eight of the 14 census tracts (sometimes significantly higher), but in other census tracts it is lower.

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