How Low Income Neighborhoods Change: Entry, Exit and Enhancement

32 Pages Posted: 6 Oct 2010  

Ingrid Gould Ellen

New York University (NYU) - Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service

Katherine M. O'Regan

New York University (NYU) - Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service

Date Written: September 1, 2010

Abstract

This paper examines whether the economic gains experienced by low-income neighborhoods in the 1990s followed patterns of classic gentrification (as frequently assumed) – that is, through the in migration of higher income white, households, and out migration (or displacement) of the original lower income, usually minority residents, spurring racial transition in the process. Using the internal Census version of the American Housing Survey, we find no evidence of heightened displacement, even among the most vulnerable, original residents. While the entrance of higher income households was an important source of income gains, original residents also experienced differential gains in income, and reported greater increases in their satisfaction with their neighborhood than found in other low-income neighborhoods. Finally, gaining neighborhoods were able to avoid the losses of white households that non-gaining low income tracts experienced, and were thereby more racially stable rather than less.

Suggested Citation

Ellen, Ingrid Gould and O'Regan, Katherine M., How Low Income Neighborhoods Change: Entry, Exit and Enhancement (September 1, 2010). US Census Bureau Center for Economic Studies Paper No. CES-WP- 10-19. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1687759 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1687759

Ingrid Gould Ellen (Contact Author)

New York University (NYU) - Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service ( email )

The Puck Building
295 Lafayette Street, Second Floor
New York, NY 10012
United States

Katherine M. O'Regan

New York University (NYU) - Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service ( email )

The Puck Building
295 Lafayette Street, Second Floor
New York, NY 10012
United States
212-998-7498 (Phone)
212-995-3890 (Fax)

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