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Zoning and the economic geography of cities

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  • Shertzer, Allison
  • Twinam, Tate
  • Walsh, Randall P.

Abstract

Comprehensive zoning is ubiquitous in U.S. cities, yet we know surprisingly little about its long-run impacts. We provide the first attempt to measure the causal effect of land use regulation over the long term, using as our setting Chicago's first comprehensive zoning ordinance adopted in 1923. Our results indicate that zoning played a central role in establishing residential neighborhoods free of industrial and commercial uses. The separation of uses established by the zoning ordinance persists to the present day and is reflected in housing prices, the location of polluting industrial sites, and population density.

Suggested Citation

  • Shertzer, Allison & Twinam, Tate & Walsh, Randall P., 2018. "Zoning and the economic geography of cities," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 105(C), pages 20-39.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:juecon:v:105:y:2018:i:c:p:20-39
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jue.2018.01.006
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Zoning; Persistence; Land use; Housing prices; Regulation;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • H7 - Public Economics - - State and Local Government; Intergovernmental Relations
    • N42 - Economic History - - Government, War, Law, International Relations, and Regulation - - - U.S.; Canada: 1913-
    • R3 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location

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