Open area and road density as land use indicators of young offender residential locations at the small-area level: A case study in Ontario, Canada

Jane Law, Matthew Quick, Ping Chan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

This research explores associations between land use types and young offender residential location in the Regional Municipality of York, Ontario, Canada, at a small-area level. Employing a Bayesian spatial modelling approach, we found that after controlling for socio-economic risk factors, proportion of open area land use was positively associated, and road density negatively associated, with residential location of young offenders. Map decomposition, which visualises the contribution of each risk factor to total young offender risk, demonstrated that open area land use contributed more risk in rural areas than urban, and that road density contributed less risk in urban areas than rural. We propose explanations for these results focused on social disorganisation theory and accessibility to structured leisure activities and apply findings to inform law enforcement and land use planning. Results provide a criminological perspective not often considered in planning and urban studies research and contrast land use policies generally motivated by public health and the environment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1710-1726
Number of pages17
JournalUrban Studies
Volume53
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Bayesian spatial modelling
  • crime
  • land use
  • open area
  • young offenders

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Urban Studies

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