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Estimating Age-Graded Effects of Businesses on Crime in Place


Although prior studies have examined the association between the presence of various types of business facilities and crime in place, less attention has been paid to how the effects of businesses can be temporally different based on their age. We focus on four consumer-facing business types: 1) retail, 2) service, 3) restaurant, and 4) food and drug stores. For each type, we construct block level measures of the number of businesses, the average business age, and the standard deviation of business age. We estimate fixed-effects negative binomial regression models to test the effects of these measures on crime in blocks, controlling for a range of factors known to be associated with crime rates. The average age of businesses was robustly associated with lower crime rates and such pattern was most pronounced in blocks with a greater business presence.

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