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Bodegas or Bagel Shops? Neighborhood Differences in Retail & Household Services

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  • Rachel Meltzer
  • Jenny Schuetz

Abstract

Social scientists studying the disadvantages of poor urban neighborhoods have focused on the quality of publicly provided amenities. However, the quantity and quality of local private amenities, such as grocery stores and restaurants, can also have important quality of life implications for neighborhood residents. In the current paper, we develop neighborhood-level metrics of "retail access" and analyze how retail services vary across New York City neighborhoods by income and racial composition. We then examine how retail services change over time, particularly in neighborhoods undergoing rapid economic growth. Results indicate that lower-income and minority neighborhoods have fewer retail establishments, smaller average establishments, a higher proportion of "unhealthy" restaurants, and in certain cases, less diversity across retail sub-sectors. In addition, the rate of retail growth between 1998 and 2007 has been particularly fast in neighborhoods that were initially lower-valued and experienced relatively high housing price appreciation compared to the city overall.

Suggested Citation

  • Rachel Meltzer & Jenny Schuetz, 2010. "Bodegas or Bagel Shops? Neighborhood Differences in Retail & Household Services," Working Paper 33, USC Lusk Center for Real Estate.
  • Handle: RePEc:luk:wpaper:33
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    File URL: http://lusk.usc.edu/sites/default/files/working_papers/wp_2010_1006.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Lashawn Richburg Hayes, 2000. "Do the Poor Pay More? An Empirical Investigation of Price Dispersion in Food Retailing," Working Papers 825, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    2. David E. Dowall, 1996. "An Evaluation of California's Enterprise Zone Programs," Economic Development Quarterly, , vol. 10(4), pages 352-368, November.
    3. Lashawn Richburg Hayes, 2000. "Do the Poor Pay More? An Empirical Investigation of Price Dispersion in Food Retailing," Working Papers 825, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Industrial Relations Section..
    4. Waldfogel, Joel, 2008. "The median voter and the median consumer: Local private goods and population composition," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(2), pages 567-582, March.
    5. Steven Berry & Joel Waldfogel, 2003. "Product Quality and Market Size," NBER Working Papers 9675, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. repec:pri:crcwel:446.pdf is not listed on IDEAS
    7. John Haltiwanger & Ron Jarmin & C. J. Krizan, 2010. "Mom-and-Pop Meet Big Box: Complements or Substitutes?," NBER Chapters,in: Cities and Entrepreneurship National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Matias Busso & Patrick Kline, 2008. "Do Local Economic Development Programs Work? Evidence from the Federal Empowerment Zone Program," Cowles Foundation Discussion Papers 1639, Cowles Foundation for Research in Economics, Yale University.
    9. Neumark, David & Kolko, Jed, 2010. "Do enterprise zones create jobs? Evidence from California's enterprise zone program," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 68(1), pages 1-19, July.
    10. Daniele Bondonio, 2003. "Do Tax Incentives Affect Local Economic Growth? What Mean Impacts Miss in the Analysis of Enterprise Zone Policies," Working Papers 03-17, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
    11. Anne C. Case & Lawrence F. Katz, 1991. "The Company You Keep: The Effects of Family and Neighborhood on Disadvantaged Youths," NBER Working Papers 3705, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    12. repec:pri:crcwel:446 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Jenny Schuetz & Jed Kolko & Rachel Meltzer, 2010. "Is the 'Shop Around the Corner' a Luxury or a Nuisance? The relationship between income and neighborhood retail patterns," Working Paper 8513, USC Lusk Center for Real Estate.
    14. Kaufman, Phillip R. & MacDonald, James M. & Lutz, Steve M. & Smallwood, David M., 1997. "Do the Poor Pay More for Food? Item Selection and Price Differences Affect Low-Income Household Food Costs," Agricultural Economics Reports 34065, United States Department of Agriculture, Economic Research Service.
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    Cited by:

    1. Jenny Schuetz & Jed Kolko & Rachel Meltzer, 2010. "Is the 'Shop Around the Corner' a Luxury or a Nuisance? The relationship between income and neighborhood retail patterns," Working Paper 8513, USC Lusk Center for Real Estate.
    2. Ding, Lei & Hwang, Jackelyn, 2016. "The Consequences of Gentrification: A Focus on Residents’ Financial Health in Philadelphia," Working Papers 16-22, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.

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    Keywords

    retail; low-income neighborhoods;

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