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The richest neighborhoods in America aren't where you'd think

Oh, DC

The Upper East Side in Manhattan… Pacific Heights in San Francisco… the Gold Coast in Chicago.

These are the wealthiest neighborhoods in America, right?

Not so, says a new ranking of the nation's most affluent areas. In fact, you may be surprised to find that the state claiming the highest number of neighborhoods with high-income residents isn't New York or California — but Maryland.

Though The Golden Triangle in Greenwich, Conn. tops the list, three out of the top five locales are found in Maryland — including Potomac Manors and Carderock-The Palisades in the city of Potomac, and Bradley Manor-Longwood in Bethesda. In those neighborhoods, the mean household incomes all reach close to $600,000. (As for The Golden Triangle, residents' mean income is over $614,000!)

The list, compiled by Stephen R. Higley, a professor emeritus of urban geography at the University of Montevallo in Alabama, uses mean household income and census data to pinpoint the highest concentrations of wealth.

Sure, Maryland may not be the first place that comes to mind when you think of wealth in America, but in fact, the results of this analysis actually confirm another recent study that found the state with the largest number of millionaires is also Maryland. As NBC notes, this suggests that the areas surrounding Washington, D.C. are quickly becoming some of the nation's top centers of wealth.

For the full list of neighborhoods — and more surprising winners — check out the complete Higley Elite 100.

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