7 Michigan Towns People Are Fleeing As Soon As Possible

Michigan is a state that has faced many challenges in recent years, such as economic decline, urban decay, high taxes, poor road conditions, and extreme weather. These factors have contributed to a population loss in many towns and cities across the state. Here are seven of them that people are leaving as soon as possible.


Detroit is the largest and most notorious city in Michigan that has suffered from a massive exodus of residents. Once a thriving industrial hub and the center of the American automotive industry, Detroit has been plagued by bankruptcy, crime, poverty, unemployment, and blight.

The city’s population peaked at 1.8 million in 1950, but has since declined to about 670,000 in 2020. Many people have abandoned their homes and businesses, leaving behind vacant buildings and empty lots. Detroit has been trying to revitalize itself with new developments and initiatives, but it still faces many challenges and uncertainties.


Flint is another former industrial city that has experienced a steep population decline. Flint was once a prosperous manufacturing town, home to General Motors and other companies. However, the decline of the auto industry, outsourcing, and automation led to the loss of jobs and income for many residents.

Flint also became infamous for its water crisis, which began in 2014 when the city switched its water source to the Flint River, which was contaminated with lead and other toxins. The water crisis exposed the city’s residents, especially children, to serious health risks and sparked a national outcry. Flint’s population dropped from about 193,000 in 1990 to about 95,000 in 2020.

Highland Park

Highland Park is a small city within Detroit that has also suffered from deindustrialization and depopulation. Highland Park was once a prosperous and diverse community, where Henry Ford built his first automobile plant and where the assembly line was invented. However, the closure of factories and the flight of residents to the suburbs eroded the city’s tax base and infrastructure. Highland Park became one of the poorest and most violent cities in the state, with a median household income of about $15,000 and a poverty rate of about 48%. The city’s population fell from about 38,000 in 1990 to about 10,000 in 2020.

Benton Harbor

Benton Harbor is a city on the shore of Lake Michigan that has also faced economic and social problems. Benton Harbor was once a thriving resort town and a center of manufacturing and commerce. However, the city lost many of its businesses and industries, such as Whirlpool, which moved its headquarters to the neighboring city of St. Joseph. Benton Harbor also struggled with racial tensions, crime, corruption, and poverty. The city’s population decreased from about 20,000 in 1990 to about 9,000 in 2020.


Hamtramck is another small city within Detroit that has experienced a population loss. Hamtramck was originally a Polish enclave, where immigrants settled and worked in the auto industry. The city was known for its cultural diversity, ethnic festivals, and historic landmarks. However, the decline of the auto industry, the loss of jobs, and the aging of the population led to a decrease in the city’s vitality and attractiveness. Hamtramck’s population declined from about 23,000 in 1990 to about 21,000 in 2020.

Muskegon Heights

Muskegon Heights is a city near the coast of Lake Michigan that has also suffered from a population decline. Muskegon Heights was once a prosperous industrial town, where companies like Brunswick and Continental Motors operated. However, the city lost many of its employers and residents to the suburbs and other regions. Muskegon Heights also faced issues such as crime, poverty, and education. The city’s population fell from about 14,000 in 1990 to about 10,000 in 2020.

Madison Charter Township

Madison Charter Township is a rural township in Lenawee County that has also seen a population decrease. Madison Charter Township was once a growing agricultural community, where farmers cultivated crops and raised livestock. However, the township lost many of its residents to other cities and states, due to the lack of economic opportunities and amenities. Madison Charter Township had a -3.7% population growth rate from 2020 to 2022.


These are some of the towns and cities in Michigan that people are fleeing as soon as possible. They are examples of how the state has been affected by various factors, such as industrial decline, environmental issues, social problems, and demographic changes. While some of these places are trying to recover and reinvent themselves, others are still struggling to survive and attract new residents. Michigan is a state that has a lot of potential and beauty, but it also faces a lot of challenges and uncertainties.

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