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Did Highways Cause Suburbanization?

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  • Nathaniel Baum-Snow

Abstract

Between 1950 and 1990, the aggregate population of central cities in the United States declined by 17 percent despite population growth of 72 percent in metropolitan areas as a whole. This paper assesses the extent to which the construction of new limited access highways has contributed to central city population decline. Using planned portions of the interstate highway system as a source of exogenous variation, empirical estimates indicate that one new highway passing through a central city reduces its population by about 18 percent. Estimates imply that aggregate central city population would have grown by about 8 percent had the interstate highway system not been built. Copyright by the President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by MIT Press in its journal The Quarterly Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 122 (2007)
Issue (Month): 2 (05)
Pages: 775-805

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Handle: RePEc:tpr:qjecon:v:122:y:2007:i:2:p:775-805

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As found on the RePEc Biblio, the curated bibliography for Economics:
  1. > Real Estate and Housing Economics
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  1. Historical Economic Geography
  2. Top 1‰ items by number of citations weighted by simple impact factors and discounted by age
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