1st Edition

Shrinking Cities Understanding urban decline in the United States

    244 Pages 22 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    244 Pages 22 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Shrinking Cities: Understanding Shrinkage and Decline in the United States offers a contemporary look at patterns of shrinkage and decline in the United States. The book juxtaposes the complex and numerous processes that contribute to these patterns with broader policy frameworks that have been under consideration to address shrinkage in U.S. cities. A range of methods are employed to answer theoretically-grounded questions about patterns of shrinkage and decline, the relationships between the two, and the empirical associations among shrinkage, decline, and several socio-economic variables. In doing so, the book examines new spaces of shrinkage in the United States. The book also explores pro-growth and decline-centered governance, which has important implications for questions of sustainability and resilience in U.S. cities. Finally, the book draws attention to U.S.-wide demographic shifts and argues for further research on socio-economic pathways of various groups of population, contextualized within population trends at various geographic scales. This timely contribution contends that an understanding of what the city has become, as it faces shrinkage, is essential toward a critical analysis of development both within and beyond city boundaries. The book will appeal to urban and regional studies scholars from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds, as well as practitioners and policymakers.

    1. Introduction

    2. Patterns and Trends: Measuring and Mapping Urban Shrinkage

    3. Patterns and Trends: Measuring and Mapping Urban Decline

    4. Explanations of Urban Shrinkage and Decline

    5. Shrinkage and Decline Beyond the Central City

    6. Pro-Growth Urban Policy

    7. Rightsizing and Smart Decline

    8. Challenges and Prospects of Regional Governance

    9. Sustainability and Resilience

    10. Concluding Remarks


    Russell Weaver is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography at Texas State University, USA.

    Sharmistha Bagchi-Sen is a Professor of Geography at the State University of New York at Buffalo, USA.

    Jason Knight is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography and Planning at the State University of New York at Buffalo, USA.

    Amy E. Frazier is an Assistant Professor of Geography at Oklahoma State University, USA.

    “This book is extremely well written. The authors offer apt summaries of a wide range of theoretical models of urban change, progrowth and rightsizing policies, and much more. Most importantly, and impressively, they provide clear and concise explanations of the bevy of quantitative approaches applied in their research. This is far more than a well-crafted book on an in vogue topic. It is a foundational text for shrinking cities scholarship. Not only does it provide a thorough review of the urban shrinkage and related literature, it also contributes fundamental empirical evidence of the shrinking cities phenomenon in the United States. It is without a doubt a must read for academics interested in urban shrinkage and decline. I would even go further to contend that it is a must own.” - Maxwell Hartt University of Toronto, Economic Geography