Map of Philly Hoods
While Philly gangs never existed like in other cities with the Crips and the Bloods or the Gangster Disciples and the Vice Lords, there are numerous blocks deep embedded in the heart of the Philly hoods, ranging from North Philly, to South Philly, to West Philly, to Southwest Philly, to Philly’s Uptown Section.
Philly Hoods Key: Blue = West Philly | Red = North Philly | Green = Uptown | Black = South Philly | Brown = Southwest Philly
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The largest section, and the heart of Philadelphia, is without a doubt North Philly. North Philly hoods include the projects and blocks of PennTown, the old Richard Allen Projects, Blumberg Projects, 23rd and Diamond, Abbottsford Projects, and blocks along streets like Cecil B. Moore and Erie Ave. North Philly also has the city’s largest Hispanic population, the Puerto Rican community of PapiVille, Kensington and the Badlands.
North of North Philly is the neighborhoods of Germantown, West Oak Lane, Ogontz, Olney, and others, all representing the Uptown section of Philly. What was once a white community, many of these neighborhoods began experiencing white flight during the 1960s and 1970s. Uptown eventually gained a reputation and became much more respected in the streets and street active as any other section of Philly, especially over the past few decades.
West Philly is separated with Philly hoods, and not Philly gangs, like the Bottom, which is home to numerous blocks from 35th to 43rd, Cobbs Creek (South Side), North Side (North of Market Street), Wynnefield, Overbrook and more. With a number of blocks and a few small projects, the community of West Philly began in the section of the Bottoms, before blacks were allowed to live anywhere else. Today, gentrification is taken over a large portion of the heart of West Philly, especially near the university.
South Philly is divided by Broad Street, with the hood being west of Philadelphia’s largest and most popular street, other than the 5th Street projects, the Saigon projects, and the black and Asian community around 7th St. While blocks might seem divided and like Philly gangs, South Philly is mainly just ‘hoods like Wilson Park Projects, 31st Tasker Projects, Smallside, 18th Street, 21st Street, and more.
There are other sections of the city, like the Northeast, home to areas like Frankford, and the Southwest, home to Kingsessing and blocks like Greenway, but the heart of Philadelphia is located in North Philly, South Philly, at least before gentrification, and West Philly. While there were Philly gangs during the 1970s and possibly the 1980s, the crack epidemic and the drug trade changed the structure of gangs in Philadelphia, basically into becoming nonexistent and more neighborhood and clique based.