The Next Wave: Predicting the future of coffee in New York City

By Mario Aksiyote

Sep 7, 2017 · 12 min read

In this article we look at New York City through the lens of coffee in an attempt to explore a fundamental question of spatial economics: how are the locations of businesses determined?

But First, A Little Background…

Caffe Reggio in 1974 (Credit: Caffe Reggio)
Left: The Anthora plays a recurring role in Law and Order: SVU reminding us that the show is set in New York City (NBC ). Right: Leslie Buck (New York Times)

Our Approach

Existing coffee shops in New York City



Coffee shops are allowed to relocate until reaching a ‘near-Nash Equilibrium’

First Attempt — Residential Population Oversight

Left: Residential population of NYC, Right: First simulation results

Second Attempt — Daytime Population Fix

3D visualizations of Left: Residential population of NYC and Right: Daytime population of NYC

Third Attempt — Commercial Locations

Fourth Attempt — Optimal Pricing

Fifth Attempt — Cultural Fit

Brown = Undifferentiated by Culture, Green = Local, Blue = Mainstream, Pink = Third Wave
Left: Actual locations of coffee shops. Right: Simulated results.
Possible model refinements: Pour over brewing (Stumptown Coffee Roasters), Yama cold brew tower (Yama), Next-gen coffee sodas (Matchless Coffee Soda)

The Next 200 Coffee Shops

The next 200 coffee shops in Manhattan. Green = Local, Blue = Mainstream, Pink = Third Wave

The Next 10 Dunkin’ Donuts

The Next 10 Starbucks

The Next 10 Third Wave Coffee Shops

Why Coffee?