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Transport subsidies, system choice, and urban sprawl

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  • Brueckner, Jan K.

Abstract

This paper analyzes the effect of transport subsidies on the spatial expansion of cities, asking whether subsidies are a source of undesirable urban sprawl. While the cost-reducing effect of transport subsidies is offset by a higher general tax burden (which reduces the demand for space), the analysis shows that subsidies nevertheless lead to spatial expansion of cities. If the transport system exhibits constant returns to scale, the subsidies are inefficient, making the urban expansion they entail undesirable. The paper also studies transport ‘system choice.’ The city is portrayed as selecting its transport system from along a continuum of money-cost/time-cost choices.
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  • Brueckner, Jan K., 2005. "Transport subsidies, system choice, and urban sprawl," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(6), pages 715-733, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:regeco:v:35:y:2005:i:6:p:715-733
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    Cited by:

    1. Tscharaktschiew, Stefan & Hirte, Georg, 2012. "Should subsidies to urban passenger transport be increased? A spatial CGE analysis for a German metropolitan area," Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 285-309.
    2. Borck, Rainald & Wrede, Matthias, 2005. "Political economy of commuting subsidies," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(3), pages 478-499, May.
    3. Wolfram Richter, 2006. "Efficiency effects of tax deductions for work-related expenses," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 13(6), pages 685-699, November.
    4. Viguie, V. & Hallegatte, S., 2014. "Urban infrastructure investment and rent-capture potentials," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7067, The World Bank.
    5. Dascher, Kristof, 2015. "Function Follows Form," University of Regensburg Working Papers in Business, Economics and Management Information Systems 486, University of Regensburg, Department of Economics.
    6. Vincent Viguie & Stéphane Hallegatte, 2015. "Urban Infrastructure Investment and Rent-Capture Potentials," Working Papers hal-01136199, HAL.
    7. Borck, Rainald & Wrede, Matthias, 2008. "Commuting subsidies with two transport modes," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 63(3), pages 841-848, May.
    8. Gusdorf, Francois & Hallegatte, Stephane, 2007. "Compact or spread-out cities: Urban planning, taxation, and the vulnerability to transportation shocks," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(10), pages 4826-4838, October.
    9. Borck, Rainald & Wrede, Matthias, 2009. "Subsidies for intracity and intercity commuting," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 25-32, July.
    10. Hirte, Georg & Tscharaktschiew, Stefan, 2011. "Income tax deduction of commuting expenses and tax funding in an urban CGE study: the case of German cities," Dresden Discussion Paper Series in Economics 02/11, Technische Universität Dresden, Faculty of Business and Economics, Department of Economics.
    11. Avner, Paolo & Rentschler, Jun & Hallegatte, Stephane, 2014. "Carbon price efficiency : lock-in and path dependence in urban forms and transport infrastructure," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6941, The World Bank.
    12. De Borger, Bruno & Fosgerau, Mogens, 2008. "The trade-off between money and travel time: A test of the theory of reference-dependent preferences," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(1), pages 101-115, July.
    13. Neeraj Baruah & J. Vernon Henderson & Cong Peng, 2017. "Colonial Legacies: Shaping African Cities," SERC Discussion Papers 0226, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.
    14. Hirte, Georg & Tscharaktschiew, Stefan, 2015. "Does labor supply modeling affect findings of transport policy analyses?," Dresden Discussion Paper Series in Economics 01/15, Technische Universität Dresden, Faculty of Business and Economics, Department of Economics.
    15. Qing Su & Joseph S. DeSalvo, 2008. "The Effect Of Transportation Subsidies On Urban Sprawl," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(3), pages 567-594.
    16. Hirte, Georg & Tscharaktschiew, Stefan, 2013. "Income tax deduction of commuting expenses in an urban CGE study: The case of German cities," Transport Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(C), pages 11-27.
    17. Wei Xiao, 2014. "Search Frictions, Unemployment, And Housing In Cities: Theory And Policies," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 54(3), pages 422-449, June.
    18. Georg Hirte & Stefan Tscharaktschiew, 2015. "Why not to choose the most convenient labor supply model? The impact of labor supply modeling on policy evaluation," ERSA conference papers ersa15p303, European Regional Science Association.
    19. Matthias Wrede, 2009. "A Distortive Wage Tax and a Countervailing Commuting Subsidy," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 11(2), pages 297-310, April.

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