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Why do the poor live in cities The role of public transportation

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  • Glaeser, Edward L.
  • Kahn, Matthew E.
  • Rappaport, Jordan

Abstract

More than 19 percent of people in American central cities are poor. In suburbs, just 7.5 percent of people live in poverty. The income elasticity of demand for land is too low for urban poverty to come from wealthy individuals' wanting to live where land is cheap (the traditional explanation of urban poverty). A significant income elasticity for land exists only because the rich eschew apartment living, and that elasticity is still too low to explain the poor's urbanization. The urbanization of poverty comes mainly from better access to public transportation in central cities.

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  • Glaeser, Edward L. & Kahn, Matthew E. & Rappaport, Jordan, 2008. "Why do the poor live in cities The role of public transportation," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(1), pages 1-24, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:juecon:v:63:y:2008:i:1:p:1-24
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