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As the city of Chicago began the plan to transform its notoriously poorly-run Chicago Housing Authority in the early 1990s, many wondered what would become of its residents and the surrounding communities. This recent report from the Urban Institute looks into the "complex relationship between public housing transformation and crime in Chicago and Atlanta." Authored by five different researchers at the Institute, this 11-page document takes a close look at crime rates in the communities that relocated public housing residents into private-market housing. The report notes that the effects were "not the simplistic relationship implied by media accounts, but rather a complex picture of declining crime rates in both cities, a small net decrease in violent crime citywide associated with the transformation efforts, but effects in some neighborhoods, those that received more than a few relocated households, that suggest that crime would have been lower in those neighborhoods had there been no public housing transformation." The report includes a number of helpful charts and summary statistics, and it will be most useful to policy analysts and planners.
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