ESLARP East St. Louis Action Research Project
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Sanitation Code Violation in East St. Louis

Executive Summary

East St. Louis, Illinois has many significant environmental problems which weaken the quality of life for all residents. Governmental and neighborhood organizations have surveyed the land use and land conditions in East St. Louis and the result indicate that there are over one-thousand derelict structures in the city as well as five-hundred vacant and unmaintained lots. A resident perception survey has indicated that the residents perceive a deficiency of city level services for sanitation code enforcement.

There are various kinds of factors that have brought this results, such as lack of proper organization of municipal services, land owners who are not held accountable for the condition of their property, political corruption which undercuts sanitation code enforcement efforts, and continuing illegal activities that are detrimental to the environment.

The purpose of the project is to identify the illegal dumping by using GIS. To identifying what factors were related to the dumping, and to identify which sites ought to receive priority in clean-up are major concern of this project. GIS was used for proving my hypotheses that dumping is related to the road networks, population density, and land use.

As a result, I could find a few slight but significant relationships between violation and other factors. First of all, violation occurs along with the Major Route of East St. Louis. The second thing is that violation is related to population density. More densely populated area has more dumping due to its higher chance to throw waste away by residents of that area. The last relationship is that land use of viable housing has higher violation than any other land use. It can be explained by applying this assumption that most of wastes came from the East St. Louis residents and they dumped waste near by their dwelling.

Introduction East St. Louis, Illinois is located in west-central Illinois across the Mississippi River from St. Louis, Missouri. Once containing over 80,000 residents, today, approximately 40,000 people reside in the city. There are many vacant houses, derelict structures, and empty lots in East St. Louis due to its collapsed socio-economic situation. Legal and illegal waste disposal undermines the quality of East St. Louis' environment and it could be source of pollution that threatens the health of residents in this area.

The problem of illegal dumping in East St. Louis is so extensive that it is difficult to know where to begin cleaning up. My purposes in this project were also to identify what factors were related to the dumping, and to identify which sites ought to receive priority in clean-up. So, I have a number of hypotheses which I am attempting to prove. I want to determine the relationship between violations and land use; distance from the highway exit and major routes, and population densities in neighborhoods. In the end, I found a few slight but significant relationships.

Document author : Yong Wook Kim
HTML by : Yong Wook Kim
Last modified: May 16, 1997

Executive Summary

East St. Louis Action Research Project
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