Res Publica - Journal of Undergraduate Research


Lindsey Haines


It seems that every city has a “bad side of town.” In Bloomington, Illinois, a community more affluent than average, does this bad side still exist? The city’s historical Westside, once a thriving working class area has now deteriorated into a blighted area. This area suffers from building code violations, inadequate public infrastructure, vacancies, etc. In addition, the area suffers from decaying rental properties. This study builds on previous literature to test the comparative effects of property characteristics, neighborhood characteristics, and landlord characteristics on the quality of rental housing on the Westside and in the city as a whole. Using data from the US Census and City of Bloomington, this study utilizes an ordered probit model revealing the stark difference on the city’s Westside.