Theses Master's

Municipal Annexation, Race, and Local Power: Evidence from Four U.S. Cities

Barton, Justin

While the topic of municipal annexation, the process of the expansion of municipal government boundaries to include previously unincorporated areas, has been examined by sociologists, legal scholars, and public administrators, it has received little attention from urban planning researchers in spite of its clear implications for issues that urban planners have historically focused on, such as: provision of services, education, power in the planning process, etc.

This thesis spatially analyzes annexations from 1970 to 2010 in Little Rock, Shreveport, Baton Rouge, and Memphis and examines annexation in these cities during this time period. Presenting evidence that race was a contributing factor in these annexations, it follows other studies which have argued that the overall white proportion of a city was an important factor in annexation. Examining the history of annexation in the South and Midwest could provide another lens for understanding the hyper-localization of racial power and could further the understanding power in the planning processes. Thus, it argues further research into annexation, with respect to race and local power is needed.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Urban Planning
Thesis Advisors
Meisterlin, Leah M.
M.S., Columbia University
Published Here
July 12, 2021