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Transport subsidies, system choice, and urban sprawl

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  • Brueckner, Jan K.

Abstract

This paper analyzes the effect of transport subsidies on the spatial expansion of cities, asking whether subsidies are a source of undesirable urban sprawl. While the cost-reducing effect of transport subsidies is offset by a higher general tax burden (which reduces the demand for space), the analysis shows that subsidies nevertheless lead to spatial expansion of cities. If the transport system exhibits constant returns to scale, the subsidies are inefficient, making the urban expansion they entail undesirable. The paper also studies transport ‘system choice.’ The city is portrayed as selecting its transport system from along a continuum of money-cost/time-cost choices.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Regional Science and Urban Economics.

Volume (Year): 35 (2005)
Issue (Month): 6 (November)
Pages: 715-733

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Handle: RePEc:eee:regeco:v:35:y:2005:i:6:p:715-733

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References

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  1. Brueckner, Jan K. & Selod, Harris, 2006. "The political economy of urban transport-system choice," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(6-7), pages 983-1005, August.
  2. Fujita,Masahisa, 1989. "Urban Economic Theory," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521346627.
  3. Thomas J. Nechyba & Randall P. Walsh, 2004. "Urban Sprawl," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(4), pages 177-200, Fall.
  4. Fujita, Masahisa & Ogawa, Hideaki, 1982. "Multiple equilibria and structural transition of non-monocentric urban configurations," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 161-196, May.
  5. Hartwick, John & Schweizer, Urs & Varaiya, Pravin, 1976. "Comparative statics of a residential economy with several classes," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 396-413, December.
  6. Sasaki, Komei, 1990. "Income class, modal choice, and urban spatial structure," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 322-343, May.
  7. Brueckner, Jan K & Kim, Hyun-A, 2003. "Urban Sprawl and the Property Tax," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 10(1), pages 5-23, January.
  8. LeRoy, Stephen F. & Sonstelie, Jon, 1983. "Paradise lost and regained: Transportation innovation, income, and residential location," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 67-89, January.
  9. Wheaton, William C., 1974. "A comparative static analysis of urban spatial structure," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 223-237, October.
  10. Voith, Richard & Gyourko, Joseph, 2002. "Capitalization of federal taxes, the relative price of housing, and urban form: density and sorting effects," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(6), pages 673-690, November.
  11. Edward L. Glaeser & Matthew E. Kahn, 2003. "Sprawl and Urban Growth," NBER Working Papers 9733, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Richard Arnott & David Pines & Efraim Sadka, 1985. "The Effects of an Equiproportional Transport Improvement in a Fully-Closed Monocentric City," Working Papers 620, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  13. Small, K.A. & Gomez-Ibanez, J.A., 1996. "Urban Transportation," Papers 95-96-4, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences.
  14. Pines, David & Sadka, Efraim, 1986. "Comparative statics analysis of a fully closed city," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 1-20, July.
  15. Calfee, John & Winston, Clifford, 1998. "The value of automobile travel time: implications for congestion policy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(1), pages 83-102, July.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Georg Hirte & Stefan Tscharaktschiew, 2011. "Income tax deduction of commuting expenses and tax funding in an urban CGE study: the case of German cities," ERSA conference papers ersa11p274, European Regional Science Association.
  2. Hirte, Georg & Tscharaktschiew, Stefan, 2013. "Income tax deduction of commuting expenses in an urban CGE study: The case of German cities," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(C), pages 11-27.
  3. Rainald Borck & Matthias Wrede, 2008. "Subsidies for Intracity and Intercity Commuting," CESifo Working Paper Series 2321, CESifo Group Munich.
  4. De Borger, Bruno & Fosgerau, Mogens, 2008. "The trade-off between money and travel time: A test of the theory of reference-dependent preferences," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 101-115, July.
  5. Avner, Paolo & Rentschler, Jun & Hallegatte, Stephane, 2014. "Carbon price efficiency : lock-in and path dependence in urban forms and transport infrastructure," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6941, The World Bank.
  6. Rainald Borck & Matthias Wrede, 2007. "Commuting Subsidies with two Transport Modes," CESifo Working Paper Series 1972, CESifo Group Munich.
  7. Rainald Borck & Matthias Wrede, 2004. "Political Economy of Commuting Subsidies," CESifo Working Paper Series 1339, CESifo Group Munich.
  8. Wolfram Richter, 2006. "Efficiency effects of tax deductions for work-related expenses," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 13(6), pages 685-699, November.
  9. François Gusdorf & Stéphane Hallegatte, 2007. "Compact or Spread-Out Cities: Urban Planning, Taxation, and the Vulnerability to Transportation Shocks," Working Papers 2007.17, Fondazione Eni Enrico Mattei.
  10. Tscharaktschiew, Stefan & Hirte, Georg, 2011. "Should subsidies to urban passenger transport be increased? A spatial CGE analysis for a German metropolitan area," Dresden Discussion Paper Series in Economics 01/11, Dresden University of Technology, Faculty of Business and Economics, Department of Economics.

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