Saturday, March 22, 2008

Today's Geography of Manufacturing

With all the interest in defense work and IT and the Creative Class Dayton still is a factory town. As of 2005 manufacturing ranked second in employment, providing 18% of the of private sector jobs in Montgomery County (ranking number two, just behind health care sector), and ranking number one in pumping money into the local economy, providing 20% of the aggregated private sector payroll in the county.

We’ve looked at some historical aspects of “The City of 1,000 Factories” (in 2005 there were 838 manufacturing establishments), so let’s look at today’s geography of manufacturing: where the plants are and where the workers live.

Sources for this post will be Zip Business Patterns (from the CenStats website) for the location of manufacturing establishment and Census 2000 SF4 @ American Factfinder for concentrations of production workers

Based on 2000 data the following map shows the census tracts with high concentrations of production workers as a % of the employed population, as well as areas with a low % of workers. Presumably the areas with a high concentration would be feeling a pinch if factory work is disappearing from the region.

"Production Worker” as defined by the Census (using BLS categories, and showing the % for Montgomery County)are these types of workers:

  • Other (including supervisors & foremen: 34%
  • Metal & plastics workers: 29%
  • Assemblers & fabricators: 25%
  • Textile, apparel, & furnishings workers: 4%
  • Printing workers: 3%
  • Food processing workers: 3%
  • Plant & system operators: 1%
  • Woodworkers: 1%
(the dreaded "other" category ranks #1)

Zip business patterns does not provide detail on the number of employees per sector (probably for confidentiality purposes), but does tell how many manufacturing establishments are in a zip code and the size range (e.g. 1-5 employees, 500-999 employees, etc). So one can roughly locate the larger establishments (employing over 100 workers) as well as concentrations of establishments.

Using the 2000 numbers this was the geography of manufacturing establishments 8 years ago.

2005 is the most recent year for the CenStats data source, and concentrations haven’t changed much since 2000:
…the top concentrations hold about 42% of all manufacturing establishments in Montgomery County, so this is a fairly geographically concentrated economic sector.

However there has been a decrease in net number of establishments, as well as downsizing or closure of some of the larger ones.

East Dayton was the big loser, but other zip codes lost as well, including Vandalia and the area along I -75 north of the city.

Countywide there has been an increase in smaller establishments, but a decrease in the number of mid-range companies. Interestingly between 2000 and 2005 the 1000 plus size range has not changed in net number of establishments.

One can see how manufacturing has suburbanized over the years, but still with substantial concentrations within Dayton, particularly in Old North Dayton and the east side north of US 35 .

The post looked at the de-industrialization of the west side. Interestingly this area hasn’t deindustrialized that much in the 2000-2005 range as the zips comprising this area actually had a net drop of one establishment, moving from 21 to 20 establishments.

The last mass-employment 1000-employees-&-up establishments did leave or downsize, dropping from 2 in 2000 to none in 2005, showing the closure of the Delphi Wisconsin Boulevard plant and downsizing at Inland.


Anonymous said...

Interesting. You may be able to use Census LED OnTheMap to get 2004 data:

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