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Title:How do Low-Income Housing Tax Credit projects trigger revitalization in shrinking cities? A case of St. Louis, MO
Author(s):Kim, Woo-Lack
Department / Program:Urban & Regional Planning
Discipline:Urban Planning
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Low-Income Housing Tax Credit
Shrinking Cities
St. Louis
Abstract:The Low-Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) program plays a significant role in providing affordable housing to low-income households by promoting affordable housing development through tax credits to private investors. In shrinking cities like Detroit and St. Louis, especially, where continuous population loss has created disinvestment and abandonment, LIHTC often represents a rare opportunity to channel resources into distressed neighborhoods. Many scholars have noticed that the LIHTC program has a significant effect on revitalization in shrinking cities by eliminating disamenities and increasing neighborhood vitality. Given this view, this study employs a quasi-experimental design to examine the impact of LIHTC developments in the St. Louis region on the neighborhoods in which they are located, compared to other neighborhoods without LIHTC units. In particular, I consider job accessibility as one of the key indicators of the analysis in order to address how the LIHTC developments provide employment opportunities in a job-housing mismatch context that is obvious in shrinking cities. This study, first, established and measured job accessibility index of every census block group. By mapping the locational distribution of the LIHTC developments, I examined the relation between the LIHTC units and job accessibility. This study then clustered all LIHTC neighborhoods into five groups with similar socio-economic characteristics. The clustering is based on the index of job accessibility. Finally, the study examined the neighborhood changes of LIHTC-communities in each cluster, where LIHTC development is present, to compare them with non-LIHTC communities. Findings suggest that the LIHTC developments in the St. Louis region have been located more in relatively high job-accessible neighborhoods. This indicates that LIHTC development has high co-relation with job opportunity and neighborhoods’ economic conditions, since it attracts private sector developers. In addition, the LIHTC developments in the neighborhoods with higher employment opportunity and more distressed conditions produce more positive changes. This means that LIHTC development plays a significant role in the revitalization of distressed neighborhoods in shrinking cities, although we see some negative effects in high-income communities.
Issue Date:2015-12-10
Rights Information:Copyright 2015 Woo-Lack Kim
Date Available in IDEALS:2016-03-02
Date Deposited:2015-12

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