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National study: SA tops income segregation list

Mayor: Never want to end up on a list like that

The first in a series of articles in The Atlantic magazine details national findings that rank San Antonio as America's most income segregated city, more so than Memphis, New York, Houston or Washington, D.C.

"Obviously, you never want to end up on a list like that," said Mayor Julian Castro.

He said in terms of race or ethnicity, San Antonio is one of the least segregated cities.

The study looked more at the separation between wealthy and poor or working class neighborhoods.

The mayor said to help bridge the gap, you start with education so that there's more upward mobility.

"We need to revitalize our older neighborhoods so that you have a mix of people living amongst each other," he said.

Castro said until then, "There are people in our city who are living that reality each and every day."

Among them are two hotel workers who said they see the obvious disparity that exists.

Roger Rodriguez and Olga Rojas both said, "From the north side to the south side, big difference."

Paxton Batchelder, a student, said he recalls a friend who went from an exclusive community to downtown.

"She was looking around like on the streets and she was like, ‘I don't see any white people,'" Batchelder said.

"They don't know what's going cause they're like one little area. They should get out more," Batchelder's lunch companion Reiana Saenz said.

"I think it pretty much used to be that way. I think things have changed," said Deborah Rodriguez, who has lived throughout the city.

As an example, there's the current urban hipster trend, with an array of downtown living developments in and around downtown.

Richard Tripp, who works downtown, said he hopes for more housing that promotes diversity "so there won't be this polarization of such a disparity."