Trends in Minority Suburbanization in American Metropolitan Areas, 1970 to 2000

Jeffrey M. Timberlake, University of Cincinnati
Aaron J. Howell, University of Cincinnati
Amanda J. Staight, University of Cincinnati

In this paper we examine trends from 1970 to 2000, in rates of minority suburbanization in American metropolitan areas. We use Census data and Hierarchical Linear Modeling techniques to estimate levels and determinants of suburbanization for non-Hispanic blacks and Asians and Hispanics of all races in 2000, as well as change from 1970 to 2000. We test two hypotheses regarding the causes of variation in minority suburbanization: that variation is related to the socioeconomic characteristics of minorities and that variation is related to the relative supply of housing in the suburbs. Our findings indicate that minority suburbanization has been driven largely by changes in the U.S. housing market—principally the rapid increase in suburban housing stock during the period under consideration. However, we also find that rates of minority suburbanization in 2000 and rates of change from 1970 to 2000 are strongly related to levels of suburbanization in 1970.

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Presented in Session 139: Residential Mobility and Neighborhood Change