More Coffee, Less Crime? The Relationship between Gentrification and Neighborhood Crime Rates in Chicago, 1991 to 2005

GVPedia Study Database

More Coffee, Less Crime? The Relationship between Gentrification and Neighborhood Crime Rates in Chicago, 1991 to 2005

Category: Crime, Homicide|Journal: City & Community (full text)|Author: A Papachristos, C Smith, M Fugiero, M Scherer|Year: 2011

This study examines the relationship between gentrification and neighborhood crime rates by measuring the growth and geographic spread of one of gentrification’s most prominent symbols: coffee shops. The annual counts of neighborhood coffee shops provide an on-the-ground measure of a particular form of economic development and changing consumption patterns that tap into central theoretical frames within the gentrification literature. Our analysis augments commonly used Census variables with the annual number of coffee shops in a neighborhood to assess the influence of gentrification on three-year homicide and street robbery counts in Chicago. Longitudinal Poisson regression models with neighborhood fixed effects reveal that gentrification is a racialized process, in which the effect of gentrification on crime is different for White gentrifying neighborhoods than for Black gentrifying neighborhoods. An increasing number of coffee shops in a neighborhood is associated with declining homicide rates for White, Hispanic, and Black neighborhoods; however, an increasing number of coffee shops is associated with increasing street robberies in Black gentrifying neighborhoods.

Share