IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/eee/juecon/v106y2018icp101-122.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

The vertical city: Rent gradients, spatial structure, and agglomeration economies

Author

Listed:
  • Liu, Crocker H.
  • Rosenthal, Stuart S.
  • Strange, William C.

Abstract

Tall commercial buildings dominate city skylines. Nevertheless, despite decades of research on commercial real estate and horizontal patterns of urban development, vertical patterns have been largely ignored. We document that high productivity companies locate higher up, with less productive offices lower down and retail at ground level. These patterns reflect tradeoffs between street access and vertical amenities. Vertical rent gradients are non-monotonic, independent of nearby employment, and large. Doubling zipcode employment is associated with a 10.7% increase in rent, consistent with the presence of agglomeration economies. Moving up one floor has the same effect on rent as adding roughly 3,500 workers to a zipcode.

Suggested Citation

  • Liu, Crocker H. & Rosenthal, Stuart S. & Strange, William C., 2018. "The vertical city: Rent gradients, spatial structure, and agglomeration economies," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 106(C), pages 101-122.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:juecon:v:106:y:2018:i:c:p:101-122
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jue.2018.04.001
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0094119018300214
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    File URL: https://libkey.io/10.1016/j.jue.2018.04.001?utm_source=ideas
    LibKey link: if access is restricted and if your library uses this service, LibKey will redirect you to where you can use your library subscription to access this item
    ---><---

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. de Bartolome, Charles A.M. & Ross, Stephen L., 2007. "Community income distributions in a metropolitan area," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(3), pages 496-518, May.
    2. Rajan, Raghuram G. & Wulf, Julie, 2006. "Are perks purely managerial excess?," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 79(1), pages 1-33, January.
    3. Combes, Pierre-Philippe & Gobillon, Laurent, 2015. "The Empirics of Agglomeration Economies," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, in: Gilles Duranton & J. V. Henderson & William C. Strange (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 0, pages 247-348, Elsevier.
    4. Brueckner, Jan K, 1993. "Inter-store Externalities and Space Allocation in Shopping Centers," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 7(1), pages 5-16, July.
    5. Solow, Robert M. & Vickrey, William S., 1971. "Land use in a long narrow city," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 430-447, December.
    6. Stuart S. Rosenthal & William C. Strange, 2003. "Geography, Industrial Organization, and Agglomeration," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(2), pages 377-393, May.
    7. Kallberg, Jarl & Liu, Crocker H. & Pasquariello, Paolo, 2008. "Updating expectations: An analysis of post-9/11 returns," Journal of Financial Markets, Elsevier, vol. 11(4), pages 400-432, November.
    8. Brueckner, Jan K. & Thisse, Jacques-Francois & Zenou, Yves, 1999. "Why is central Paris rich and downtown Detroit poor?: An amenity-based theory," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 43(1), pages 91-107, January.
    9. Rosenthal, Stuart S. & Strange, William C., 2001. "The Determinants of Agglomeration," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 50(2), pages 191-229, September.
    10. Maarten G.J. Jennen & Dirk Brounen, 2009. "The Effect of Clustering on Office Rents: Evidence from the Amsterdam Market," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 37(2), pages 185-208, June.
    11. Mohammad Arzaghi & J. Vernon Henderson, 2008. "Networking off Madison Avenue," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 75(4), pages 1011-1038.
    12. Rosenthal, Stuart S. & Strange, William C., 2004. "Evidence on the nature and sources of agglomeration economies," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, in: J. V. Henderson & J. F. Thisse (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 49, pages 2119-2171, Elsevier.
    13. Peter F. Colwell & Henry J. Munneke & Joseph W. Trefzger, 1998. "Chicago's Office Market: Price Indices, Location and Time," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 26(1), pages 83-106, March.
    14. Jason Barr, 2012. "Skyscraper Height," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 45(3), pages 723-753, October.
    15. Shilton, Leon & Zaccaria, Anthony, 1994. "The Avenue Effect, Landmark Externalities, and Cubic Transformation: Manhattan Office Valuation," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 8(2), pages 151-165, March.
    16. Arthur M. Sullivan, 1991. "Tall buildings on cheap land: Building heights and intrabuilding travel costs," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 29(3), pages 310-328, May.
    17. Stuart S. Rosenthal & William C. Strange, 2005. "The geography of entrepreneurship in the New York metropolitan area," Economic Policy Review, Federal Reserve Bank of New York, issue Dec, pages 29-53.
    18. Combes, Pierre-Philippe & Duranton, Gilles & Gobillon, Laurent, 2008. "Spatial wage disparities: Sorting matters!," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(2), pages 723-742, March.
    19. Pashigian, B Peter & Gould, Eric D, 1998. "Internalizing Externalities: The Pricing of Space in Shopping Malls," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 41(1), pages 115-142, April.
    20. Rosen, Sherwin, 1974. "Hedonic Prices and Implicit Markets: Product Differentiation in Pure Competition," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 82(1), pages 34-55, Jan.-Feb..
    21. Brueckner, Jan K., 1987. "The structure of urban equilibria: A unified treatment of the muth-mills model," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, in: E. S. Mills (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 20, pages 821-845, Elsevier.
    22. Ahlfeldt, Gabriel M. & McMillen, Daniel P., 2015. "The vertical city: the price of land and the height of buildings in Chicago 1870-2010," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 64622, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    23. Eric D. Gould & B. Peter Pashigian & Canice J. Prendergast, 2005. "Contracts, Externalities, and Incentives in Shopping Malls," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 87(3), pages 411-422, August.
    24. Behrens, Kristian & Robert-Nicoud, Frédéric, 2015. "Agglomeration Theory with Heterogeneous Agents," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, in: Gilles Duranton & J. V. Henderson & William C. Strange (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 0, pages 171-245, Elsevier.
    25. Hans R. A. Koster & Jos van Ommeren & Piet Rietveld, 2014. "Is the sky the limit? High-rise buildings and office rents," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 14(1), pages 125-153, January.
    26. Pollard, Robert, 1980. "Topographic amenities, building height, and the supply of urban housing," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 181-199, June.
    27. Jason Barr, 2010. "Skyscrapers and the Skyline: Manhattan, 1895–2004," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 38(3), pages 567-597, September.
    28. Duranton, Gilles & Puga, Diego, 2015. "Urban Land Use," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, in: Gilles Duranton & J. V. Henderson & William C. Strange (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 0, pages 467-560, Elsevier.
    29. Roback, Jennifer, 1982. "Wages, Rents, and the Quality of Life," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 90(6), pages 1257-1278, December.
    30. Hans R. A. Koster & Jos Ommeren & Piet Rietveld, 2014. "Agglomeration Economies and Productivity: A Structural Estimation Approach Using Commercial Rents," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 81(321), pages 63-85, January.
    31. Stuart S. Rosenthal & William C. Strange, 2012. "Female Entrepreneurship, Agglomeration, and a New Spatial Mismatch," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 94(3), pages 764-788, August.
    32. William C. Wheaton & Raymond G. Torto, 1988. "Vacancy Rates and the Future of Office Rents," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 16(4), pages 430-436, December.
    33. Helsley, Robert W. & Strange, William C., 2008. "A game-theoretic analysis of skyscrapers," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 49-64, July.
    34. Matthew P. Drennan & Hugh F. Kelly, 2011. "Measuring urban agglomeration economies with office rents," Journal of Economic Geography, Oxford University Press, vol. 11(3), pages 481-507, May.
    35. Miller, Merton H & Rock, Kevin, 1985. "Dividend Policy under Asymmetric Information," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 40(4), pages 1031-1051, September.
    36. Han, Lu & Strange, William C., 2015. "The Microstructure of Housing Markets," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, in: Gilles Duranton & J. V. Henderson & William C. Strange (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 0, pages 813-886, Elsevier.
    37. Rosenthal, Stuart S. & Strange, William C., 2008. "The attenuation of human capital spillovers," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 373-389, September.
    38. Alberto Plazzi & Walter Torous & Rossen Valkanov, 2010. "Expected Returns and Expected Growth in Rents of Commercial Real Estate," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 23(9), pages 3469-3519.
    39. John L. Glascock & Shirin Jahanian & C. F. Sirmans, 1990. "An Analysis of Office Market Rents: Some Empirical Evidence," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 18(1), pages 105-119, March.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Liu, Crocker H. & Rosenthal, Stuart S. & Strange, William C., 2020. "Employment density and agglomeration economies in tall buildings," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(C).
    2. Ahlfeldt, Gabriel M. & Barr, Jason, 2022. "The economics of skyscrapers: A synthesis," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 129(C).
    3. Ahlfeldt, Gabriel M. & Barr, Jason, 2022. "The economics of skyscrapers: A synthesis," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 129(C).
    4. Li, Jing & Li, Liyao & Liu, Shimeng, 2022. "Attenuation of agglomeration economies: Evidence from the universe of Chinese manufacturing firms," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 130(C).
    5. Jordy Meekes & Wolter H. J. Hassink, 2023. "Endogenous local labour markets, regional aggregation and agglomeration economies," Regional Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 57(1), pages 13-25, January.
    6. Ahlfeldt, Gabriel M. & Pietrostefani, Elisabetta, 2019. "The economic effects of density: A synthesis," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 111(C), pages 93-107.
    7. Federico Curci, 2015. "The taller the better? Agglomeration determinants and urban structure," ERSA conference papers ersa15p991, European Regional Science Association.
    8. Li, Jing, 2014. "The influence of state policy and proximity to medical services on health outcomes," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(C), pages 97-109.
    9. Gilles Duranton & William R. Kerr, 2015. "The Logic of Agglomeration," Harvard Business School Working Papers 16-037, Harvard Business School.
    10. Coll Martínez, Eva, 2017. "Creativity and the City: Testing the Attenuation of Agglomeration Economies fo r the Creative Industries in Barcelona," Working Papers 2072/292435, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Department of Economics.
    11. Carlino, Gerald & Kerr, William R., 2015. "Agglomeration and Innovation," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, in: Gilles Duranton & J. V. Henderson & William C. Strange (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 0, pages 349-404, Elsevier.
    12. Martijn Dröes & Philip Koppels & Boris Ziermans, 2017. "Information Asymmetry, Lease Incentives, and the Role of Advisors in the Market for Commercial Real Estate," ERES eres2017_250, European Real Estate Society (ERES).
    13. William C. Strange, 2009. "Viewpoint: Agglomeration research in the age of disaggregation," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 42(1), pages 1-27, February.
    14. Combes, Pierre-Philippe & Gobillon, Laurent, 2015. "The Empirics of Agglomeration Economies," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, in: Gilles Duranton & J. V. Henderson & William C. Strange (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 5, chapter 0, pages 247-348, Elsevier.
    15. Moretti, Enrico, 2011. "Local Labor Markets," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 14, pages 1237-1313, Elsevier.
    16. Lychagin, Sergey, 2016. "Spillovers, absorptive capacity and agglomeration," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(C), pages 17-35.
    17. Rosenthal, Stuart S. & Strange, William C., 2008. "The attenuation of human capital spillovers," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 373-389, September.
    18. Hans R. A. Koster & Piet Rietveld & Jos N. van Ommerren, 2011. "Is the Sky the Limit? An Analysis of High-Rise Office Buildings," SERC Discussion Papers 0086, Centre for Economic Performance, LSE.
    19. Ming He & Yang Chen & Ron Schramm, 2018. "Technological spillovers in space and firm productivity: Evidence from China’s electric apparatus industry," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 55(11), pages 2522-2541, August.
    20. repec:hal:spmain:info:hdl:2441/1kv8mtgl748r0ahh12air9erdc is not listed on IDEAS
    21. Jason Barr & Jennifer Johnson, 2020. "Skyscrapers and the Happiness of Cities," Eastern Economic Journal, Palgrave Macmillan;Eastern Economic Association, vol. 46(2), pages 344-377, April.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Commercial real estate; Access; Amenities; Spatial structure; Rent gradient; Vertical; Agglomeration economies;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • O18 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Urban, Rural, Regional, and Transportation Analysis; Housing; Infrastructure
    • R30 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location - - - General

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:juecon:v:106:y:2018:i:c:p:101-122. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: Catherine Liu (email available below). General contact details of provider: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/622905 .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service. RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.