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Decomposing the growth in residential land in the United States

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  • Henry G. Overman

    ()
    (London School of Economics)

  • Diego Puga

    ()
    (Universitat Pompeu Fabra and IMDEA)

  • Matthew A. Turner

    ()
    (University of Toronto)

Abstract

This paper decomposes the growth in land occupied by residences in the United States to give the relative contributions of changing demographics versus increases in the land area used by individual households. Between 1976 and 1992 the amount of residential land in the United States grew 47.5% while population only grew 17.8%. At first glance, this suggest an important role for per-household increases. However, the calculations in this paper show that only 24.3% of the growth in residential land area can be attributed to State-level changes in land per household. 37.5% is due to overall population growth, 5.9% to the shift of population towards States with larger houses, 22.7% to an increase in the number of households over this period, and the remaining 9.5% to interactions between these changes. There are large differences across states and metropolitan areas in the relative importance of these components.

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Paper provided by Instituto Madrileño de Estudios Avanzados (IMDEA) Ciencias Sociales in its series Working Papers with number 2007-02.

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Date of creation: 19 Feb 2007
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Publication status: Published in Regional Science and Urban Economics 38(5), September 2008: 487-497
Handle: RePEc:imd:wpaper:wp2007-02

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Keywords: land use; population growth;

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  1. Frances Kobrin, 1976. "The fall in household size and the rise of the primary individual in the United States," Demography, Springer, vol. 13(1), pages 127-138, February.
  2. Andrew B. Bernard & Stephen J. Redding & Peter K. Schott, 2006. "Multi-Product Firms and Trade Liberalization," NBER Working Papers 12782, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. L. Rachel Ngai & Roberto M. Samaniego, 2006. "An R&D-Based Model of Multi-Sector Growth," CEP Discussion Papers dp0762, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
  4. Edward L. Glaeser & Matthew E. Kahn, 2003. "Sprawl and Urban Growth," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2004, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  5. Marcy Burchfield & Henry G. Overman & Diego Puga & Matthew A. Turner, 2005. "Causes of sprawl: A portrait from space," Working Papers tecipa-192, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
  6. Duncan Black & Vernon Henderson, 1997. "Urban Growth," NBER Working Papers 6008, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Leiwen Jiang & Brian C. O'Neill, 2007. "Impacts of Demographic Trends on US Household Size and Structure," Population and Development Review, The Population Council, Inc., vol. 33(3), pages 567-591.
  8. Erik Dietzenbacher & Bart Los, 1998. "Structural Decomposition Techniques: Sense and Sensitivity," Economic Systems Research, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 10(4), pages 307-324.
  9. Lawrence Santi, 1988. "The demographic context of recent change in the structure of American households," Demography, Springer, vol. 25(4), pages 509-519, November.
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Cited by:
  1. de Cara, Stephane & Fournier, Anne & Gaigne, Carl, 2011. "Feeding the Cities and Greenhouse Gas Emissions - Beyond the Food Miles Approach," 2011 International Congress, August 30-September 2, 2011, Zurich, Switzerland 114350, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
  2. Stéphane De Cara & Anne Fournier & Carl Gaigné, 2011. "Feeding the Cities and GHG Emissions: Beyond the Food Miles Approach," Working Papers 1109, Chaire Economie du Climat.

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