1. Deindustrialized area of the Midwest including, but not limited to: Illinois, Indiana, southeast Missouri, Michigan, Ohio, and western Pennsylvania. This area is called so because it suffered from problems that arose when manufacturing centers closed in the 1960's, 1970's, and 1980's. This in turn led to an out migration of whites (white flight
) who lost their jobs and an in migration of southern blacks who took over the deindustrialized areas, which led to a severe increase in crime. Many of those who left headed south for the Sun Belt
. Major cities that suffered somewhat from the Rust Belt problems include Chicago, Indianapolis, Cincinnati, and Columbus. Cities hit especially hard include Detroit, Cleveland, St. Louis, and Pittsburgh. Ironically, all of these cities have revitalized their downtowns and become popular tourist destinations with major attractions. Only two major cities, Indianapolis and Columbus, have grown substantially despite being Rust Belt cities. In fact, one can say these cities have survived the "curse" of the Rust Belt. Only time will tell what happens next to these major cities.
Gary, Indiana is a severe example of all the problems caused by the Rust Belt.