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Redlining’s Hidden Legacy: Racial Disparities in Property Tax Systems

Watch as Joe Minnicozzi of Urban3 demystifies disparities in land valuation and learn how GIS imaging can level the playing field.

April 3, 2024

Property tax systems are how most of us pay for local government. Even if we don’t own our own homes or commercial spaces, landlords typically pass through the cost of property taxes to tenants. Local property tax systems in turn play a huge role in planning, zoning, placemaking, and capital improvement planning.

Upon closer inspection, property tax systems everywhere overburden some communities while under-burdening others. The pattern of those communities is one familiar to many — it’s the pattern of redlining. Property tax systems have been helping preserve racial disparities in wealth by contributing greatly to the extraction of wealth from historically redlined areas.

Join Next City for a presentation with Joe Minicozzi, urban designer and principal of Urban3, who will share how disparities in land value assessment end up subsidizing wealthier, whiter neighborhoods at the cost of overburdening historically redlined neighborhoods — and how people can have an impact on these systems. For over a decade, Minicozzi has used data and visualizations to help communities understand the economic impact of property tax systems on development. In this talk, he’ll do more of that and share solutions that are being implemented in communities across the country.

The presentation will followed by a Q&A, moderated by Oscar Perry Abello, senior economic justice correspondent at Next City.



Oscar Perry Abello is Next City's senior economic justice correspondent. He previously served as Next City’s editor from 2018-2019, and was a Next City Equitable Cities Fellow from 2015-2016. Since 2011, Oscar has covered community development finance, community banking, impact investing, economic development, housing and more for media outlets such as Shelterforce, B Magazine, Impact Alpha and Fast Company.

Guest Speaker:


Joe Minicozzi is an urban planner imagining new ways to think about and visualize land use, urban design and economics. Joe founded Urban3 to explain and visualize market dynamics created by tax and land use policies. Urban3's work establishes new conversations across multiple professional sectors, policy makers, and the public to creatively address the challenges of urbanization. Urban3’s extensive studies range geographically over 30 states, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Joe holds a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Miami and Master of Architecture and Urban Design from Harvard University. In 2017, Joe was recognized as one of the 100 Most Influential Urbanists of all time.

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