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The Minimum Circuity Frontier and the Journey to Work

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Abstract

In an urban context people travel between places of residence and work destinations via transportation networks. Transportation studies that involve measurements of distances between residence and work locations tend to use Euclidean distances rather than Network distances. This is due to the historic difficulty in calculating network distances and based on assumptions that differences between Euclidean distance and network distance tend to be constant. This assumption is true only when variation in the network is minor and when self-selection is not present. In this paper we use circuity, the ratio of network to Euclidean distance, as a tool to better understand the choice of residential location relative to work. This is done using two methods of defining origins and destinations in the Twin Cities metropolitan region. The first method of selection is based on actual choice of residence and work locations. The second is based on a randomly selected dataset of origins and destinations in the same region. The findings of the study show circuity measured through randomly selected origins and destinations differ from circuity measured from actual origins and destinations. Workers tend to reside in areas where the circuity is lower, applying intelligence to their location decisions. We posit this because locators wish to achieve the largest residential lot at the shortest commute time. This finding reveals an important issue related to resident choice and location theory and how resident workers tend to locate in an urban context.

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File URL: http://nexus.umn.edu/Papers/Circuity.pdf
File Function: First version, 2007
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University of Minnesota: Nexus Research Group in its series Working Papers with number 200905.

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Date of creation: 2007
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Publication status: Published in Regional Science and Urban Economics 39(6) 732Ð738
Handle: RePEc:nex:wpaper:circuity

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Keywords: Network structure; travel behavior; transport geography; commuting; circuity;

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  1. Wachs, Martin & Taylor, Brian D. & Levine, Ned & Ong, Paul, 1993. "The Changing Commute: A Case Study of the Jobs/Housing Relationship over Time," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt7424635r, University of California Transportation Center.
  2. Lothlorien Redmond & Patricia Mokhtarian, 2001. "The positive utility of the commute: modeling ideal commute time and relative desired commute amount," Transportation, Springer, vol. 28(2), pages 179-205, May.
  3. Ballou, Ronald H. & Rahardja, Handoko & Sakai, Noriaki, 2002. "Selected country circuity factors for road travel distance estimation," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 36(9), pages 843-848, November.
  4. Small, Kenneth A. & Song, Shunfeng, 1992. ""Wasteful" Commuting: A Resolution," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt5142n2ts, University of California Transportation Center.
  5. Samaniego, Horacio & Moses, Melanie E., 2008. "Cities as Organisms: Allometric Scaling of Urban Road Networks," The Journal of Transport and Land Use, Center for Transportation Studies, University of Minnesota, vol. 1(1), pages 21-39.
  6. Giuliano, Genevieve & Small, Kenneth A., 1993. "Is the Journey to Work Explained by Urban Structure?," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt2ss7x5b1, University of California Transportation Center.
  7. Kim, Chansung, 2008. "Commuting time stability: A test of a co-location hypothesis," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 524-544, March.
  8. Jos Van Ommeren, 2004. "The commuting distribution," ERSA conference papers ersa04p214, European Regional Science Association.
  9. Clark, William A. V. & Huang, Youqin & Withers, Suzanne, 2003. "Does commuting distance matter?: Commuting tolerance and residential change," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 199-221, March.
  10. Giuliano, Genevieve, 1991. "Is Jobs-Housing Balance a Transportation Issue?," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt4874r4hg, University of California Transportation Center.
  11. Cho, Eun Joo & Rodriguez, Daniel & Song, Yan, 2008. "The Role of Employment Subcenters in Residential Location Decisions," The Journal of Transport and Land Use, Center for Transportation Studies, University of Minnesota, vol. 1(2), pages 121-151.
  12. Robert F. Love & James G. Morris, 1979. "Mathematical Models of Road Travel Distances," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 25(2), pages 130-139, February.
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Cited by:
  1. Surprenant-Legault, Julien & Patterson, Zachary & El-Geneidy, Ahmed M., 2013. "Commuting trade-offs and distance reduction in two-worker households," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 12-28.
  2. Elif Alkay, 2011. "In Depth Analysis of the Home to Work Travel Pattern in the Istanbul Metropolitan Area," ERSA conference papers ersa11p371, European Regional Science Association.
  3. repec:asg:wpaper:1049 is not listed on IDEAS
  4. David Levinson, 2011. "Network Structure and City Size," Working Papers 000094, University of Minnesota: Nexus Research Group.

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