View the chart: Revisiting the Urban West
In 1994, Dr. James Weatherby and Dr. Stephanie Witt authored The Urban West: Managing Growth and Decline, an analysis of the challenges facing Boise and cities of similar size in the western United States. Twenty-five years later, they have published a follow-up, Revisiting the Urban West Governing Cities in Uncertain Times. It explores how city governments are limited by their relationships to other levels of government, by local tax limitations imposed by their citizens, the by the pressures of population change and the wider economy.
This series of charts depicts the trends discussed in Revisiting the Urban West. All of the data shown in these graphs are taken from the book. The data center on population growth, measures of the economy and revenue sources. Between 1990 and 2007, for example, the Boise-Nampa metropolitan area has experienced more growth in population than any of the other nine cities considered except Tempe’s Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale metropolitan area. In regard to city revenues, Idaho cities rely on property tax for a larger percentage of their revenue than any of the other western states studied, and they received far less revenue through local sales taxes than other western states. This is due to the Idaho’s unusually stringent limitations on local sales taxes. Finally, Boise, like all of the other cities considered, has experienced a rise in the unemployment rate over the past ten years.
The graphs and tables created on this website give readers another valuable way to interact with the data we use in the Urban West Revisited book. We hope that you will take this opportunity to delve deeper into the information here about the ten cities and eight states covered in the book. Information about purchasing a copy of Urban West Revisited can be found here, or in a Kindle edition at Amazon.com.
To explore the data firsthand, visit our Revisiting the Urban West interactive graphic.
All data used in these charts is from Stephanie L. Witt and James B. Weatherby (2012). Revisiting the Urban West. Boise, ID: College of Social Sciences and Public Affairs, Boise State University.
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