Fast food and liquor store density, co-tenancy, and turnover: Vice store operations in Chicago, 1995-2008

Naa Oyo A. Kwate, Ji Meng Loh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Fast food restaurants and liquor stores-vice stores-have been shown to be more prevalent in predominantly Black and low income U.S. neighborhoods, and are associated with a number of health risks and social ills. The purpose of this study was to investigate in the City of Chicago vice store density and spatial distribution as a function of racial, socioeconomic, and other population characteristics; to examine spatial clustering among these outlets; and to study how store turnover follows population change over a 13-year period. We used spatial point process analysis to fit linear and non-linear models for the intensity function of stores. Spatial clustering was estimated using the K function. We found heterogeneous associations between stores and population characteristics, with the most consistent finding being a positive association between percent Black and liquor store exposure. A high degree of spatial clustering was evident, and liquor stores were more likely to stay in business over time than fast food restaurants. However, when liquor stores closed, they were more likely to be replaced by non-vice businesses. Results suggest that vice stores are associated with lower positions in racial and socioeconomic hierarchies, and this patterning is often durable over time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-13
Number of pages13
JournalApplied Geography
StatePublished - Feb 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Forestry
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • General Environmental Science
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


  • African American/Black
  • Chicago
  • Fast food
  • Liquor stores
  • Neighborhoods
  • Retail
  • Vice


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