The Relationship Between Gentrification and Eviction Rates in Washington, D.C. Neighborhoods
Evictions are commonplace in the United States and are associated with significant negative outcomes in terms of the health, financial wellbeing, and housing stability of the evicted. Housing market pressure driven by gentrification represents a mechanism through which evictions might occur. This thesis examines the relationship between gentrification and eviction rates in Washington, D.C., a city experiencing one of the highest gentrification rates in the U.S. I use census data and a novel court record dataset to examine the association between tract-level eviction rates and proxies for gentrification that measure changes in tracts’ economic and demographic characteristics. I find that, for originally low-income or high-share-black tracts, there is a negative relationship between these gentrification proxies and eviction rates. My findings contribute modestly to the body of literature challenging the widely held notion that gentrification causes widespread displacement.
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