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31.1 Proportion of Downtown Housing Units to Jobs

This indicator measures the ratio of housing units to jobs in the downtown area of Albuquerque, the city’s largest center of business and government.

This indicator is part of Active, safe downtown.

Indicator description:

This indicator measures the ratio of housing units to jobs in the downtown area of Albuquerque, the city’s largest center of business and government. For purposes of this indicator, “downtown” is the compilation of 13 Data Analysis Sub-Zones established by the Mid-Region Council of Governments. The area corresponds to Census Tract 21 and is bounded by Lomas Boulevard on the north, Broadway Boulevard on the east, Coal Avenue on the south, and 8th Street on the west. A lower ratio indicates more housing units per job.

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Why is this indicator relevant?

A good downtown serves as the core of a community and optimizes the efficiency of infrastructure, generates value in creating and accessing opportunities, and optimizes efficiency, economy, and conservation. Downtowns are more likely to be vital and active when a significant number of people reside there, in addition to those who come to the area only for work, commerce, or entertainment. The appropriate ratio of downtown jobs to housing units is undefined and varies from city to city depending on a variety of factors, but a lower ratio; i.e. more housing units per job, is generally considered to be more desirable than the alternative. A higher number of housing units in an area tends to attract a broader base of services and businesses such as grocery markets and other household oriented businesses than an area with fewer housing units.

Data Sources:
Mid-Region Council of Governments, Data Analysis Sub-Zones; Engelen, Rodney E., from mixedusecores.com.

What can we tell from the data?

  • The proportion of downtown housing units to downtown jobs improved substantially between 2000 and 2010 after only a minor improvement between the beginning and the end of the ‘90s decade.
  • The 645 downtown housing units in 2012 reflect a 65% increase over the 1990 figure and a 62% increase over the 2000 number. Downtown jobs decreased 16% between 2008 and 2010.
  • Both the increase in housing units and the decline in jobs contributed to the improved ratio of housing units to jobs, but the increase in housing units played a larger role.

 

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