February 1, 2011
W11-1: Suburban gentrification is most visible through capital reinvestment in the built environment. In this paper, I examine one type of reinvestment—the incremental, residential redevelopment process in which older single-family housing is demolished and replaced with larger single-family housing. The paper addresses the question: why is redevelopment more likely to occur in some neighborhoods than in others. I perform a nonnested multilevel logistic regression analysis of parcel-level data for all single-family parcels in 128 suburbs and unincorporated areas of Chicago between 2000 and 2010 to examine the property and neighborhood characteristics associated with single-family residential redevelopment in inner-ring suburban neighborhoods. Findings indicate that properties with smaller houses, lower floor area-to-lot size ratios (FAR), and lower ratios of their value to that of their neighborhood are more likely to be redeveloped. The median property value of a neighborhood does not have a large effect on whether a property is redeveloped, but neighborhoods with higher proportions of Black and Hispanic residents were significantly less likely to experience redevelopment. School district quality was very highly associated with redevelopment; the odds of redevelopment for properties located in the highest-ranked school districts are 2.5 times that of those that are not.
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