Top 25 Cities With The Most Opportunity Zones

Which cities have the largest number of Opportunity Zones? The top three cities — New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago — are to be expected. But numbers 4 through 10 may be somewhat surprising.

On today’s episode, we review the top 25 cities with the highest amount of Opportunity Zones, and take a deep dive into the top 10 cities, walking through geographic maps and income data.

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The Top 25

These are the 25 cities with the largest amount of Opportunity Zones, along with population rank (according to the 2020 census, with Puerto Rican cities included) and median household income.

RankCityOZsPop. RankMedian HHI
1New York, NY3061$47k
2Los Angeles, CA1942$44k
3Chicago, IL1353$31k
4San Juan, PR12057$23k
5Houston, TX974$38k
6Philadelphia, PA826$36k
7Detroit, MI7027$33k
8Bayamón, PR56142$27k
9Cleveland, OH4854$30k
10Phoenix, AZ425$37k
10Baltimore, MD4230$39k
10Ponce, PR42206$18k
13Fresno, CA3734$33k
14Columbus, OH3814$35k
15San Diego, CA358$43k
16Indianapolis, IN3415$39k
16Milwaukee, WI3431$30k
18Carolina, PR32170$28k
19Kansas City, MO3136$31k
20Memphis, TN3028$25k
20Oakland, CA3045$52k
22Pittsburgh, PA2868$31k
22Caguas, PR28219$24k
23St. Louis, MO2770$31k
23Atlanta, GA2738$31k
25Cincinnati, OH2666$34k

Of note, 11 of the top 20 largest U.S. cities are not on the above list.

  • San Antonio, TX (7th largest city)
  • Dallas, TX (9th)
  • San Jose, CA (10th)
  • Austin, TX (11th)
  • Jacksonville, FL (12th)
  • Fort Worth, TX (13th)
  • Charlotte, NC (16th)
  • San Francisco, CA (17th)
  • Seattle, WA (18th)
  • Denver, CO (19th)
Top 25 Cities With The Most Opportunity Zones

About The Opportunity Zones Podcast

Hosted by founder Jimmy Atkinson, The Opportunity Zones Podcast features guest interviews from fund managers, advisors, policymakers, tax professionals, and other foremost experts in opportunity zones.

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Show Transcript

Jimmy: Welcome to the “Opportunity Zones Podcast” presented by I’m Jimmy Atkinson. And on today’s episode, which cities have the largest number of Opportunity Zones? Today, I’m going to walk through the top cities that have the most Opportunity Zones using my website,

We’ll take a close look at the maps of many of these cities highlighting where the Opportunity Zones are in some of our largest cities. Of note, some cities have high concentrations of Opportunity Zones in their downtown areas, others have OZs in more residential areas, outside of the main city center. We’ll kind of take a look at each one of those top cities.

But let’s dive in and share my screen here with you now, and I’m going to turn to my monitor here. And first, this is a list of the top 25 cities with the most Opportunity Zones. So, they’re ranked by how many Opportunity Zones they have, and then you have the population rank here in this column, which shows where the city ranks among the largest U.S.

cities, the most populous U.S. cities. And then I also have a column here for the median household income. By the way, this table will be available on the show notes page for today’s episode, which you can find at But taking a look through the top 25 cities, 1, 2, and 3 should be no surprise, New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago, the most populous cities in the United States.

But a little bit of a head-scratcher here. You wouldn’t think necessarily that San Juan, Puerto Rico is number four. It’s the 57th most populous city in the United States and yet it has 120 Opportunity Zones. Only behind those top three cities and more than, you know, several more populous cities. In case you’re unaware, Puerto Rico was granted a special rule that allowed them to designate 100% of their low-income census tracts as Opportunity Zones.

According to the statute, ordinarily, each state in the United States and overseas territory and the District of Columbia was able to designate up to 25% of their low-income census tracts as Opportunity Zones or exactly 25 Opportunity Zones if the number of census tracts that met the criteria was less than 25.

So, each state in the country and each territory has up to 25% of their low-income census tracts designated as Opportunity Zones. But Puerto Rico was granted an exception to that rule in an effort to help catalyze redevelopment and rehabilitation from the devastation brought on by Hurricane Maria and subsequent earthquakes that hit the island a few years ago.

Congress made a special rule for them. They were able to designate 100% of their Opportunity Zones. So we actually do have quite a few Puerto Rican cities in the top 25, including San Juan here at number 4, Bayamon at number 8. Let’s see, Ponce at number 10, tied for 10 with Phoenix and Baltimore, Carolina at number 18. And then Caguas, number 22.

I’m not going to go through all those Puerto Rican cities. When I pull up the map, I’ll probably just go over Puerto Rico at large. But then rounding up the top 10, we have Houston, Philadelphia, Detroit, Cleveland, and then a tie for 10th place between Phoenix and Baltimore. So, I’m going to go through the top 10 only. I’m going to kind of drill into the top 10, but outside of the top 10 as we go through the rest of the top 25, I’ll just kind of rattle them off quickly here.

Fresno, California, Columbus, Ohio, San Diego, California, Indianapolis, Indiana, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Kansas City, Missouri, Memphis, Tennessee, Oakland, California, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, St. Louis, Missouri, Atlanta, Georgia, and rounding out the top 25, Cincinnati, Ohio. Now, notably, more than half of the top 20 most populous U.S. cities are not on the above list.

They actually don’t have that many Opportunity Zones. San Antonio, Texas, the seventh largest city in the United States, falls just outside the top 25. I think I had them slotted in around 26 or 27 or so. And there’re actually quite a few in Texas that are large cities, populous cities, but don’t have enough low-income census tracts to put them into the top 25 most Opportunity Zones.

Dallas is in there at 9th, Austin at 11th, and Fort Worth, my city where I live now, 13th. Other populous cities that don’t make the top 25 but are in the top 20 most populous U.S. cities include San Jose, California, let’s see, Jacksonville, Florida, Charlotte, North Carolina, San Francisco, California, very affluent area.

That shouldn’t be a surprise. Seattle, Washington, Denver, Colorado, and Washington, D.C. also just barely falls outside of the top 25. They’re the 20th most populous U.S. city. They do have a fair amount of Opportunity Zones. So, we’re going to drill in now to each one of these top 10 cities. We’ll just cover Puerto Rico briefly as one island.

But let’s move along now to our first city on the list, which is New York City, New York, New York, home to 306 Opportunity Zones. By far the most number of Opportunity Zones in the country. I mean, it’s an enormous city, population over 8 million. So, the Opportunity Zones represent about 17% of the city’s total population.

And if we look at the five boroughs of New York, and I’ll zoom into the map here in a little bit, let’s actually zoom into the map right now a little bit. There aren’t a lot of Opportunity Zones in Manhattan and then Staten Island to the south here, not very populated.

There are only a handful of Opportunity Zones in Staten Island. The majority of the Opportunity Zones that you’ll find in New York City are in Brooklyn and in the Bronx. And then there’s a fair number in Queens as well. So, I’ll kind of zoom into Manhattan here. You can see there really are not very many Opportunity Zones in Midtown Manhattan or lower Manhattan.

There’s a handful here. There’s four that touch lower Manhattan here. There’s this one here in Hell’s Kitchen, but you really have to, you know, walk north of Central Park before you start getting into where there are a considerable amount of Opportunity Zones in Harlem and in Upper Manhattan.

And then across the Harlem River here, you do have quite a few in the Bronx. Scrolling down here now to Queens, which is home to both of New York’s large airports. We’ve got JFK here on the south.

There are quite a few Opportunity Zones immediately surrounding JFK. Up here at LaGuardia, really not very many Opportunity Zones up here in LaGuardia. There are a couple of zones on either side of Flushing Meadows, where the Mets play and where the U.S.

Open is played. Right here at Long Island City, this is a Long Island City Opportunity Zone. This was going to be home to Amazon HQ2, but those plans got scuttled at the last minute, but that was Opportunity Zone that was in the headlines for a while here. Coming down into Brooklyn now, quite a few Opportunity Zones in Brooklyn as I mentioned before.

Quite a few along the river here as well. And in Williamsburg, you’ll find quite a few Opportunity Zones by the Williamsburg Bridge and these other bridges here at the Manhattan Bridge and the Brooklyn Bridge, you’ve got some Opportunity Zones adjacent to both of those areas as well.

So, let’s look at the map of New York City and where the Opportunity Zones are roughly, but, you know, we can scroll down here on our website… By the way, I should have mentioned this at the top. If you’re listening to this episode on iTunes or Spotify or some other podcast listening app, I apologize to you.

This is really more of a visual episode. If you want to get the full picture, pun intended, you should head over to our YouTube channel right now. You can find us on, and find today’s podcast episode on cities with the most Opportunity Zones. And you’ll really get a good visual of what I’m showing on our website and the different maps. But here’s a list of all of New York City’s Opportunity Zones.

And you can sort here by median household income. There are quite a few Opportunity Zones where the household income is well north of $100,000. If legislation gets passed that would grandfather, or not grandfather, excuse me, would sunset or disqualify early certain high-income census tracts, you know, I think several of these would likely be on the chopping block.

But getting back to grandfathered, just to be clear, if you have investments in any of these zones that do end up getting disqualified early, your investment is grandfathered in, so you’re safe there. Again, that legislation’s still pending. But hopefully, that gets passed sometime here in the next few months.

But again, quite a few tracks in New York City where the median household income is in the six figures and high median home values north of a million dollars or getting close to a million dollars. If you scroll through this list here, here you can find the New York State average. Quite a few below there.

I’m just going to kind of scroll through and then, let’s see, we’re going to get to the New York State OZ average right here, $47k median household income. Quite a few south of that number, well north of 100 Opportunity Zones south of that number there. And again, most of these being located in either Kings County or Bronx County.

Kings County being Brooklyn and a handful in New York County that would cover Manhattan, particularly Upper Manhattan and Harlem. So, that’s a look at New York City, home to 306 Opportunity Zones, but we’ll move along now to the second city on our list, which is also the second most populous city in the United States.

And that’s my hometown of Los Angeles, California. I don’t live there anymore, but I grew up there. And Los Angeles is home to 194 designated Opportunity Zones covering roughly 20% of the city’s total population, about half the size of New York City but nearly two-thirds of the Opportunity Zones that New York City has.

Just a huge area geographically, of course. And the median household income varies considerably. I’ll scroll down to that list when I get done scrolling through the map here, but let’s take a look at where the Opportunity Zones are in Los Angeles. This area north of the city of Los Angeles here, north of the downtown area, I should say, but still part of the city of Los Angeles, the San Fernando Valley is home to roughly a third or so.

I think it’s about 60-plus Opportunity Zones, was counting manually the other day. Roughly 60 or so Opportunity Zones in the San Fernando Valley area here. A couple in Somar, California here. These are these northernmost Opportunity Zones.

We had one of the OZ Pitch Day partners with us, Xebec Realty, presented their Sound Stage studio deal, which was located up here. I’m not sure which of these zones it was in, but definitely up here in Somar, the two northernmost zones in Los Angeles. And then moving along down here, once you get outside of the valley, you come down south of Glendale, south of Pasadena, and you hit Hollywood right here.

This area adjacent to Beverly Hills. I don’t think there’s any Opportunity Zones in Beverly Hills, but the area just east of Beverly Hills in Hollywood and South Hollywood has quite a few zones here, including one of these here. I think it might be this one or this one, I could zoom in and find out, is home to the Dolby Theatre and Grauman’s, or now Mann’s Chinese Theater.

Dolby Theatre is really in the heart of Hollywood. Dolby Theatre’s where they have the Academy Awards every year. So, there is some impoverished areas, but it’s kind of a mix. It’s a juxtaposition of kind of the ritz and glamor of Hollywood with some impoverished neighborhoods immediately surrounding that area.

If you’ve ever been there, I’m sure you’re familiar with what I’m talking about now. Downtown Los Angeles, not a whole lot of Opportunity Zones in the heart of Downtown. But you do have some Opportunity Zones to the east and in East LA and quite a few in South LA as well coming down this corridor here dotted throughout South LA really.

And, you know, formally known as South Central LA. So, that’s a look at the map of LA and where the Opportunity Zones lie there. And we had a few in Hollywood and quite a few in the San Fernando Valley as well. A list of the Opportunity Zones in Los Angeles. You can see…I’ll sort this by median household income descending.

Only a couple of zones are above the statewide average in terms of median household income. Only one zone with median household income at the six-figure level. And then the vast majority of them though do fall below the statewide average. And then we keep scrolling down here, we will eventually get to the statewide OZ average.

Here’s the statewide OZ average, $44,000 median household income. And then we do see the bulk of them well below the average median household income for OZs, which means that, you know, of all of the Opportunity Zones in California, those that are in Los Angeles are likely below average median household income of those OZs.

Quite a few Opportunity Zones in the state of California has the most Opportunity Zones in the country. Believe there are more than 800. I don’t have that information on my fingertips, but I believe there’s more than 800 Opportunity Zones in the state of California, and, you know, about a fifth of them are in the Los Angeles area.

So, that’s a look at Los Angeles. Moving along now to our third-most populous city in the United States. And it has the third-most Opportunity Zones in the country, Chicago, Illinois. So, Chicago’s really interesting actually, whereas we saw with Los Angeles, there are, you know, zones spread throughout the area and in New York City as well, zones all over the map.

Chicago, there is nothing downtown and there’s nothing on the north. This city really is quite interesting in that the wealth is concentrated almost exclusively in the city center or the Loop as it’s called and north of there.

So you see we go north of downtown Chicago, north of the Loop. There is no Opportunity Zones here. All of the Opportunity Zones, 100% of Chicago’s Opportunity Zones are concentrated on the west side and in south side Chicago. So, West Chicago, you really do have to get west of where the United Center is.

United Center is around here somewhere. You got to get west of Dan Ryan Expressway before you start running into some Opportunity Zones out in these areas here. And then, you know, coming down south side Chicago, you start hitting them once you get into Bronzeville area.

We have had an OZ Pitch Day partner, Eagle OZ, which has presented a few times on our pitch day, they invest in residential developments in Chicago south side, primarily in the Bronzeville community. Of note, Obama’s Presidential Library is down here and is adjacent to an Opportunity Zone down here on the south side along the lake shore here.

And then, you know, continuing on south down the Skyway all the way down until you get to East Chicago, there are plenty of Opportunity Zones dotting the map here of Chicago. If we want to list all of the Chicago Opportunity Zones now, we get to 135, the list of 135 zones in Chicago, Illinois, I’ll sort by median household income now.

And you really do have no Opportunity Zones that are north of $100,000. And the vast majority of them save one has median household income below the statewide average. This is OZs and non-OZs. This first statewide average here, all of Illinois. And then you get down, let’s find the OZ average.

Here’s the Illinois OZ average at $31,000 median household income. You know, well more than half of these are going to be south of that number. A lot of impoverished areas in Chicago, particularly concentrate on the south side of Chicago. So that’s a good look at Chicago there.

We’ll move on now to, I think, Puerto Rico is next on list. Yeah, so, we’ve got San Juan, Puerto Rico. We actually had, I think, it was 5 cities in the top 25 that are in Puerto Rico. Two of them…well, three of them, I guess, so talking about San Juan and then the other two of the other five were Bayamon and Carolina, which are adjacent to San Juan. So, I’ll kind of take a look at all three of those areas.

Frankly, there’s not a whole lot to look at here. It might be more important to point out which areas of the map are not in an Opportunity Zone for Puerto Rico. I’ll get into that in a minute. But just to kind of recap, there’s 120 Opportunity Zones in San Juan. If this city didn’t have that exception to the 25% rule, you know, you might see closer to 30 designated Opportunity Zones, which would probably still put it in the top 25 which is impressive because I think it’s only the 50 or something largest city in U.S.

There’s quite a bit of low-income census tracts in the city of San Juan and all over Puerto Rico. But, you know, close to 100% of the population of the island and close to 100% of the population of San Juan lies in an Opportunity Zone. But Bayamon is down here and then Carolina over here. And then this is San Juan here.

So these three cities, I mean, it’s a large San Juan metropolitan area, essentially. If you want to include Carolina and Bayamon, you’re probably getting close to 200 designated Opportunity Zones in, you know, the greater San Juan area. Then you can see, I’ll zoom out all the way to…I mean, zoom into the map, but then zoom out the map. You’ve got the entire island of Puerto Rico comes into view now and you can see really nearly the entire island, I’ve heard 98%, 95%, 99%, depending on how you slice and dice it of the island lies within an Opportunity Zone.

So zooming back in now…oh, I did want to point out Ponce was also in the top 25. And then what was that other one? Caguas which is down in this area somewhere is also… Yeah, here’s Caguas right here.

Really only a couple of neighborhoods in Caguas which are not in an Opportunity Zone, a couple of pockets here. But if you’re looking to develop in Puerto Rico or you’re looking to invest in Puerto Rico, lot of opportunity there. And then on top of the Opportunity Zones incentive, Puerto Rico also gives you access to multiple tax credit programs that are offered by the Puerto Rican government.

There’s relocation tax credits if you want to relocate down there. There’s tourism tax credits that you can take advantage of as well if you’re building hospitality assets. There’s really quite a bit going on down there, but we’ll zoom into San Juan for a minute. There’s really only a couple of areas that aren’t in an Opportunity Zone. This area of Condado right here, quite affluent area, a lot of luxury hotels, a lot of tourism in this area here along this main stretch along the Laguna, and here along the Caribbean Coast.

But, you know, San Juan, Old San Juan right here is almost entirely covered as Opportunity Zone. I mean, I think the only areas that aren’t covered are this airport right here and then a couple of state historic parks where there’s no residents.

So, not even sure if those are census tracts or not. And then moving along to Carolina, the airport does not lie in a zone. There’s no residents there. But the area immediately to the east and to the south of the airport are Opportunity Zones. This part of Carolina though is not more affluent area right here just west of the big international airport.

So that’s a good look at Puerto Rico with a map there. In terms of median household income, it’s very low compared to the mainland. Nothing even approaching six figures, the highest median household income tract in all of San Juan is merely $62,000, home value of $265,000.

Let’s scroll through here and see if we can find our averages. So, the Puerto Rico OZ average is $23k. We do have quite a few in San Juan north of that number, but I think the majority will be south of that number there. And we get down as low as $2,000, $3,000, you know, well under $10k for a handful of these tracts here.

So, suffice it to say San Juan, Puerto Rico and Puerto Rico as a whole, a whole lot of Opportunity Zones in that part of the country. Let’s move on now to the…where are we at now? I think this is the fifth most Opportunity Zones.

Number five on the list is Houston, Texas. Home to nearly 100 Opportunity Zones. We’ve got 97 Opportunity Zones in Houston. And you can see they’re largely concentrated here in the city center on the east side, a little to the north, a little bit to the south, got a couple of pockets here on the west and on the northwest.

But the vast majority of them really centering along the city center here. I’ll zoom in. Let’s zoom in on the screen here too, zoom into the city of Houston here. Minute Maid Park where the Astros play lies in an Opportunity Zone. This area down here, one of these census tracts has NRG park and NRG field, NRG Stadium, I should say.

And the old Astrodome is down here as well. This is where the Houston Texans play football. All of that area, including the stadium and the surrounding neighborhoods around the stadium lie in Opportunity Zones. Downtown Houston city center primarily Opportunity Zone land, got a couple of pockets here that aren’t, but the vast majority of Houston’s main downtown area, especially the eastern part of downtown lies in an Opportunity Zone.

And then quite a few residential areas north and to the south. And again, some pockets here on the west and northwest. Oh, University of Houston, let’s see, I think is right here. There’s a little pocket of the University of Houston that’s not in an Opportunity Zone I was noticing. Yeah, here’s most of the University of Houston’s campus right here, but the areas, the student housing immediately surrounding that area is located in an Opportunity Zone.

We can probably spend an entire episode just looking at the different universities around the country. Maybe we’ll do that someday because it is kind of interesting where a lot of the Opportunity Zones lie on college campuses or just off of college campuses where the students technically are low income, even though oftentimes they come from rather affluent backgrounds.

But that’s another conversation for another day, but there are a lot of opportunities to do development in and around college campuses with Opportunity Zones. So, list of the Houston Opportunity Zones, again, there’s 97 of them. Yeah, it looks like they’re all south of six figures. This one just barely coming in at $99k, a handful of them are north of the statewide average for Texas, but the vast majority of them fall below that number.

Here’s the Texas OZ average at $38,000. And you can see Harris County, Houston, Texas, most of the Opportunity Zones in Houston lie below this statewide Opportunity Zone average of $38k. So, that’s our look at Houston.

Moving along now to number six on the list is Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with 82 Opportunity Zones. Quite a few Opportunity Zones in the city of Brotherly Love representing about 19% of the city’s total population. Zooming into the map here, take a look and point out a couple of things about Philadelphia that I find a little bit interesting.

So, first of all, South Philly, almost nothing in South Philly. Where the Eagles play football is down here, I think, if I recall correctly. I’ve never been to Philadelphia, actually. So, you have to forgive me if I misspeak, but only a handful of Opportunity Zones here. South of the city center, really not a lot going on South Philly.

You’ve got a few pockets of Opportunity Zones here. On the west side of Philadelphia, you have quite a few Opportunity Zones west of the river here. And then Downtown Philadelphia, really not a lot in the main city center of Philadelphia. You do have this one Opportunity Zone here in the city center.

This is where their Chinatown is. So, you do have one Opportunity Zone in Chinatown here. I should note that these areas, east of Philadelphia here, east of this river, are in New Jersey. So lie outside of the city of Philadelphia, but they do kind of touch upon and lead up into this North Philadelphia area, which is where most of the Opportunity Zones lie is really outside of the city center going north into North Philly and West Philly over here in this area.

You know, one thing I wanted to know when I was looking at the map of Philadelphia, Independence Hall, does that lie in an Opportunity Zone? No, it doesn’t. Independence Hall’s around this area here. Does not lie in an Opportunity Zone.

All of these areas here, the main downtown area and where the Liberty Bell is, not an Opportunity Zone. What about the Rocky Steps? I did find out that the Rocky Steps are just barely in an Opportunity Zone. I think it’s this one right here. You can see an Opportunity Zone kind of cuts right through right in front of the steps here. So, once you get to the bottom of the steps and you cross the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, you’re no longer in an Opportunity Zone, but this area here, the Philadelphia Museum of Art and the Steps do lie in a zone which actually somewhat gerrymandered fashion that does stretch pretty far north and west away from that area and covers mostly this residential area west of the river here.

So, that’s Philadelphia. That’s the map of Philadelphia. Again, about 19% of the city’s population of Philadelphia lives in an Opportunity Zone. If I can sort by median household income now, nothing north of $100k, a handful of tracts that do lie above the statewide average.

And then we get to the statewide OZ average, $36,000 median household income. You have the vast majority of Philadelphia’s Opportunity Zones lie below that statewide Opportunity Zone average. I think we’re number seven on the list now.

Detroit, Michigan, a city that’s lost a lot of population over the last 50 to 100 years or so. But it’s home to a lot of Opportunity Zones despite being…let me go back to our main table here. Yeah, we are at number seven with Detroit.

It’s the 27th most populous city. So, really outside of Puerto Rico, this is like the first city that’s way outside of the top 10 that is in the top 10, and it’s at number 27. Again, it’s lost a lot of population over the years and its median household income is quite low as well. Only slightly higher than Chicago, but let’s get back to Detroit now.

I’m going to close these guys here. We’ll get to Detroit, Michigan. Interestingly, a lot of Detroit’s Opportunity Zones, and I had Jed Howbert on the show a few weeks back. He’s developing in Detroit, Michigan, and we were actually looking at the map at one point during the episode and I pointed out…

And actually, I think that served as the inspiration for today’s episode. Unlike a lot of other cities, certainly unlike Chicago, another huge, great Midwest city, Detroit’s Opportunity Zones are concentrated primarily in the city center and a lot of riverfront, waterfront Opportunity Zones as well along this border with Windsor, Ontario heading into Canada. One of the few places where you can be in the United States and you have to drive south to get into Canada from Detroit, Michigan.

Kind of a fun fact there. But you can see all of these zones highly concentrated in the main city downtown core right here of Detroit, Michigan. You get right into Downtown Detroit, right in the heart of downtown. You can walk for blocks and blocks and blocks in any direction without leaving an Opportunity Zone. Contrast that with Chicago, where we saw zero Opportunity Zones in their Downtown Loop area.

Ford Field where the Detroit Lions play, Opportunity Zone in, you know, every location in any direction around Ford Field is in an Opportunity Zone as well. So, 70 Opportunity Zones. Again, the vast majority of them, you know, concentrated right around the city center here.

You got a few on the outskirts as well in the more suburban parts of the city, but you got the vast majority of them right in downtown. And again, quite a few on the water too. A lot of this waterfront is Opportunity Zone area. And, you know, Detroit was already starting to revitalize a little bit before Opportunity Zones took shape.

And, you know, the hope here is that by designating so many of these Opportunity Zones at the state level right in the city of Detroit hopefully brings more revitalization to the motor city. We’ll look at some of the facts here. Twenty-two percent of the city’s population live in an Opportunity Zone. So, it covers quite a bit of the residents of Detroit.

And then sort this table by median household income, Wayne County, Michigan, home to Detroit, the vast majority of them do lie below the statewide average. We got, what was it, five of them above the statewide average. Nothing above $100,000 a year in median household income.

And then here’s the Michigan Opportunity Zone average, $33k. Quite a few zones in Detroit that fall below that figure there. So, that’s Detroit, Michigan. That was our city with the seventh most Opportunity Zones in the country. Number eight on the list is another Midwest city that you might not expect to find on this list.

It’s the 54th most populous city in the United States. With 48 Opportunity Zones, it ranks number 9 on our Opportunity Zone list, Cleveland, Ohio. I was fortunate enough to be able to visit Cleveland, Ohio last fall for the Novogradac Fall Opportunity Zone Conference in 2021.

And coincidentally happily, it landed on a date where the Cleveland Browns were in town. So, I know a lot of us and probably many of my listeners listening today or watching today were at that game with me or at the game at least for that Opportunity Zone conference. That was a fun time. But Cleveland, again, a lot like Detroit, a lot of Opportunity Zones right in the heart of the city.

You get right to the middle of Downtown Cleveland and the public square here. And FirstEnergy Stadium where the Browns play, it’s all in Opportunity Zone. And if you, you know, get right into the middle of downtown and walk in any direction for blocks and blocks and blocks, and you’re going to find yourself in an Opportunity Zone. You come down south here to where Jacob’s Field is, or I forget the name of it now, but where the Cleveland Indians play, that is also in an Opportunity Zone.

You got this stretch here coming down Interstate 77 on either side, which is not Opportunity Zone area, but the vast majority of the city, it seems, at least the downtown part of the city is an Opportunity Zone.

So, a lot of opportunity there and a lot of waterfront also along the lake here. Plenty of Opportunity Zones just to the east of Downtown Cleveland and to the south of downtown Cleveland as well. Represents about 25% of the city’s total population, the Opportunity Zones there. Come along down to the list of Opportunity Zones.

There’s 48 of them in the city of Cleveland in Cuyahoga County. Nothing north of $100K, only three of them above the statewide average of $59,000 median household income. And let’s see, here’s the Ohio Opportunity Zone average is at $30,000, pretty low number there. And we’ve got quite a few Opportunity Zones in Cleveland that fall well below that number.

And even a few that are below…a couple here that are below $10,000 median household income. So, a lot of opportunity here in Cleveland, 48 designated Opportunity Zones. We’re getting toward the end of our list now. I think we’re going to cover Phoenix and Baltimore as well. Before I get there, though, just kind of interesting about the state of Ohio.

Ohio placed 3 cities in the top 25, the 54th most populous city, Cleveland, came in at number 9. Columbus, Ohio, the 14th most populous city and one of the fastest-growing parts of the Midwest and indeed parts of the country, Columbus, 14th most populous city is also the city with the 14th most Opportunity Zones at 38.

And then finally, last but not least on this list here, number 25, the 66th most populous city, Cincinnati, Ohio with 26 Opportunity Zones makes it the city with the 25th most Opportunity Zones in the country. So, interesting three from the state of Ohio. Ohio is also unique in that the state of Ohio offers on top of the federal tax incentive and on top of the state tax incentive that Opportunity Zones provide, they also give you a 10% tax credit for doing Opportunity Zone development anywhere in the state of Ohio.

So, that’s a little bit about Ohio there. I’ll get to Phoenix, Arizona now. Phoenix home to 42 designated Opportunity Zones. And what is Phoenix? Phoenix is tied for 10th with Baltimore, and then we already covered Ponce. So I’ll cover Phoenix and Baltimore tied for 10th. And that’ll round out today’s episode.

Each of these with 42 Opportunity Zones. Phoenix, you would expect to find on the list of the fifth most populous city in the nation and certainly one of the fastest-growing cities as well. Stretching over to Scottsdale, here, we’ve got a couple of Opportunity Zones in Scottsdale. But again, we’ll zoom in primarily to the city center here, the heart of Downtown Phoenix, quite a few Opportunity Zones right in Downtown Phoenix here.

One of our OZ Pitch Day partners, CRE Development Capital is developing a Fairmont hotel and residences right in the heart of Phoenix across the street from the arena where the Phoenix Suns play right in Downtown Phoenix here. Here’s Chase Field where the Diamondbacks play.

And let’s see, forgive me. I’m not exactly sure where the arena is, the basketball arena. I think it’s… Here it is. Talking Stick Arena is located just a few blocks west of Chase Field. So this is the Arena District here. It’s all located in an Opportunity Zone.

And then the Convention Center is…I think this might be the Convention Center right here. Here’s the Arizona center. Let me zoom in here one more time. Yeah, here’s the Convention Center. I was right. The Convention Center’s right across the street from the Arena District. So quite a bit of activity happening here, quite a bit of opportunity in Downtown Phoenix to develop.

It’s interesting that this is all Opportunity Zone areas. You know, a lot of the areas surrounding this Arena and Convention District is rather impoverished and is in need of rehabilitation, redevelopment. So that is coming slowly but surely to these areas of Downtown Phoenix. And then kind of zooming out, you get quite a few really dotted all over Phoenix to the north, to the west, to the east.

There’s really not a huge concentration in any particular location. You come over here to Glendale, which is where the Arizona Cardinals play, you got a handful of Opportunity Zones in Glendale as well. I think that’s actually outside of the city of Phoenix proper, but worth mentioning. So Phoenix, Arizona, for the most part, not a lot of Opportunity Zones considering how populous the area is, 5th most populous city in the country, but only the 10th most in terms of number of Opportunity Zones.

And, you know, as such, only 10% of the population lives in one of these Opportunity Zones in Phoenix. We will take a look at the table now of the 42 Opportunity Zones in Phoenix, a couple of them coming up north of the statewide average, $65k, $64k, statewide average being $62k median household income. Nothing north of $100k for Phoenix.

We saw a few in LA and in New York that were north of $100k. We haven’t seen a lot since then. And then here’s the Arizona statewide Opportunity Zone average, $37,000. It looks like a little more than half are below that number, a fair number above that number as well. So that’s Phoenix, Arizona.

And that brings us to our last city in the top 10, which is Baltimore, Maryland to round out today’s episode. Baltimore, you can see kind of a concentration, or I should say, not a concentration, really a smattering of Opportunity Zones all around Baltimore. They’ve got some on the north side, some to the east, some to the south, some to the west, some downtown. Did a fairly good job of splitting up where those Opportunity Zones are.

You’d see different states and different cities that have, first of all, different demographics, geographic demographics in terms of where their impoverished areas are or where they are not. That was the case with Chicago where there is nothing on the north side, or nothing in the Loop either, and everything was to the west and to the south.

Baltimore really pretty good smattering of Opportunity Zones all around the city, downtown area and the outskirts of the city as well. So, Baltimore, their 42 Opportunity Zones cover about 19% of the total city’s population. The median household income, quite a wide range.

We do have one that’s above $100,000. That’s the only one that’s above the statewide average of $87,000. And then where is the Maryland Opportunity Zone average? So, Maryland statewide Opportunity Zone average household income is $39,000. And I would say, yeah, the vast majority of Opportunity Zones in Baltimore lie south of that number below $39,000.

We do get as low as $13,000, but as high as $104,000. So, a very wide range there. And that is a look at Baltimore. So, that rounds out the top 10. I had quite a few cities that we didn’t get to, but I will be sure to link to this page on our show notes for today’s episode.

You can find those show notes at We’ll have this list of the top 25 cities with the most Opportunity Zones. And you can also visit to get a list of Opportunity Zones by state. I’ll head over there. Very briefly right now, we can just kind of look through the state list.

So, this is an alphabetized list of every state and overseas territory in the United States. The District of Columbia is on here as well. I think it goes by Washington, D.C. on our list, but you can see the number of Opportunity Zones in every single state and how they were designated, whether they were low-income tracts or non-low-income contiguous tracts.

And you can click on any one of these locations here. I’ll go to Texas since that’s where I am with 628 Opportunity Zones. And you can see map of Texas, and then we’ll have a list of all the funds that have some exposure to Texas, all of the qualified opportunity funds with exposure to Texas. And then here’s a list of every single Opportunity Zone in the state of Texas by county.

So, that’s just a little bit of a flavor, a little bit more of what you can do on our website at But again, if you’re looking for show notes for today’s episode for everybody listening or watching today, please check out those show notes,

We’ll have the list of the top 25 cities. And again, that was opportunity to see a list of every Opportunity Zone by state. Please be sure to subscribe to us on YouTube or your favorite podcast listening platform to always get the latest episodes.

Thanks for watching.


Discover Your Next Opportunity Zone Investment...

OZ Pitch Day

March 7, 2024