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Suburbanization and highways: when the romans, the bourbons and the first cars still shape Spanish cities

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  • Miquel- Àngel Garcia-López

    ()
    (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona & IEB)

  • Adelheid Holl

    ()
    (CSIC, Institute for Public Goods and Policies)

  • Elisabet Viladecans-Marsal

    ()
    (Universitat de Barcelona & IEB)

Abstract

We estimate the effects of highways on the suburbanization of Spanish cities. First, we extend previous findings for the US and China by providing evidence for Europe: each additional highway ray built between 1991 and 2006 produced a 5 per cent decline in central city population between 1991 and 2011. Second, our main contribution is at the intrametropolitan level. We find that highway improvements influence the spatial pattern of suburbanization: suburban municipalities that were given improved access to the highway system between 1991 and 2006 grew 4.6% faster. The effect was most marked in suburbs located at 5–11 km from the central city (7.1%), and concentrated near the highways: population spreaded out along the (new) highway segments (4.7%) and ramps (2.7%). To estimate the causal relationship between population growth and highway improvements, we rely on an IV estimation. We use Spain’s historical road networks – Roman roads, 1760 main post roads, and 19th century main roads – to construct our candidates for use as instruments.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB) in its series Working Papers with number 2013/5.

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Length: 33 pages
Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:ieb:wpaper:2013/6/doc2013-5

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Keywords: Suburbanization; highways; transportation infrastructure;

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References

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  1. Gilles Duranton & Matthew A. Turner, 2009. "The Fundamental Law of Road Congestion: Evidence from US Cities," SERC Discussion Papers 0030, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.
  2. Miquel- Àngel Garcia-López, 2012. "Urban spatial structure, suburbanization and transportation in Barcelona," Working Papers 2012/11, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
  3. John I Carruthers & Gudmundur F Ulfarsson, 2003. "Urban sprawl and the cost of public services," Environment and Planning B: Planning and Design, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 30(4), pages 503-522, July.
  4. Albert Solé-Ollé & Elisabet Viladecans-Marsal, 2004. "Central Cities as Engines of Metropolitan Area Growth," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(2), pages 321-350.
  5. Edward L. Glaeser & Matthew E. Kahn, 2003. "Sprawl and Urban Growth," NBER Working Papers 9733, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Guy Michaels, 2007. "The effect of trade on the demand for skill - evidence from the interstate highway system," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 3268, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
  7. Glaeser, Edward L. & Kahn, Matthew E., 2010. "The greenness of cities: Carbon dioxide emissions and urban development," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 67(3), pages 404-418, May.
  8. Piyapong Jiwattanakulpaisarn & Robert B. Noland & Daniel J. Graham & John W. Polak, 2009. "Highway Infrastructure Investment And County Employment Growth: A Dynamic Panel Regression Analysis," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 49(2), pages 263-286.
  9. Gilles Duranton & Matthew A. Turner, 2007. "Urban growth and transportation," Working Papers tecipa-305, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
  10. Wheaton, William C., 1974. "A comparative static analysis of urban spatial structure," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 223-237, October.
  11. Adelheid Holl, 2011. "Factors influencing the location of new motorways: the large scale motorway building in Spain," Working Papers 1105, Instituto de Políticas y Bienes Públicos (IPP), CSIC.
  12. Garcia-López, Miquel-Àngel, 2012. "Urban spatial structure, suburbanization and transportation in Barcelona," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 176-190.
  13. Adelheid Holl, 2012. "Market potential and firm-level productivity in Spain," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 12(6), pages 1191-1215, November.
  14. Nathaniel Baum-Snow, 2007. "Did Highways Cause Suburbanization?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 122(2), pages 775-805, 05.
  15. Baum-Snow, Nathaniel, 2007. "Suburbanization and transportation in the monocentric model," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(3), pages 405-423, November.
  16. Anas, Alex & Moses, Leon N., 1979. "Mode choice, transport structure and urban land use," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 6(2), pages 228-246, April.
  17. Nathaniel Baum-Snow, 2010. "Changes in Transportation Infrastructure and Commuting Patterns in US Metropolitan Areas, 1960-2000," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 100(2), pages 378-82, May.
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  1. New historical development papers on my desk
    by Robin in Cherokee Gothic on 2013-04-18 13:00:05
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Cited by:
  1. Miquel-Àngel Garcia-López & Albert Solé-Ollé & Elisabet Viladecans-Marsal, 2014. "Do land use policies follow road construction?," Working Papers 2014/2, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
  2. Rafael González-Val & Daniel A. Tirado-Fabregat & Elisabet Viladecans-Marsal, 2013. "Market potential and city growth: Spain 1860-1960," Working Papers 2013/13, Institut d'Economia de Barcelona (IEB).
  3. Stephen J. Redding & Matthew A. Turner, 2014. "Transportation Costs and the Spatial Organization of Economic Activity," CEP Discussion Papers dp1277, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.

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