Shrinking smart?: Urban redevelopment and shrinkage in Youngstown, Ohio

James Rhodes, John Russo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This article analyzes the impact of the much-heralded Youngstown 2010 Plan and the enacting of a program of "controlled" or "managed" shrinkage. It is argued that while the program of redevelopment has had an impact on Youngstown and its national image, it represents an exclusionary project that has centered on redeveloping downtown areas and neglected many city neighborhoods which continue to experience high levels of unemployment, vacancy, and crime. The analysis is situated in relation to the contemporary literature on "shrinking cities." Youngstown's experience raises critical questions regarding the nature of the challenges facing shrinking cities, the constraints on actions available to them due to state and federal funding, and the coherence of the concept of "smart shrinkage." © 2013 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)305-326
Number of pages21
JournalUrban Geography
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2013


  • deindustrialization
  • neoliberal urbanism
  • shrinking cities


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