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Transport subsidies, system choice, and urban sprawl

  • Brueckner, Jan K.

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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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Regional Science and Urban Economics.

Volume (Year): 35 (2005)
Issue (Month): 6 (November)
Pages: 715-733

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Handle: RePEc:eee:regeco:v:35:y:2005:i:6:p:715-733
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/regec

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  1. Richard Voith & Joseph Gyourko, . "Capitalization of Federal Taxes, the Relative Price of Housing, and Urban Form: Density and Sorting Effects," Zell/Lurie Center Working Papers 366, Wharton School Samuel Zell and Robert Lurie Real Estate Center, University of Pennsylvania.
  2. Wheaton, William C., 1974. "A comparative static analysis of urban spatial structure," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 223-237, October.
  3. Small, K.A. & Gomez-Ibanez, J.A., 1996. "Urban Transportation," Papers 95-96-4, California Irvine - School of Social Sciences.
  4. LeRoy, Stephen F. & Sonstelie, Jon, 1983. "Paradise lost and regained: Transportation innovation, income, and residential location," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 13(1), pages 67-89, January.
  5. Hartwick, John & Schweizer, Urs & Varaiya, Pravin, 1976. "Comparative statics of a residential economy with several classes," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 13(3), pages 396-413, December.
  6. Brueckner, Jan K. & Selod, Harris, 2006. "The political economy of urban transport-system choice," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(6-7), pages 983-1005, August.
  7. Calfee, John & Winston, Clifford, 1998. "The value of automobile travel time: implications for congestion policy," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(1), pages 83-102, July.
  8. Edward L. Glaeser & Matthew E. Kahn, 2003. "Sprawl and Urban Growth," NBER Working Papers 9733, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  9. Brueckner, Jan K & Kim, Hyun-A, 2003. "Urban Sprawl and the Property Tax," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 10(1), pages 5-23, January.
  10. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521346627 is not listed on IDEAS
  11. Richard Arnott & David Pines & Efraim Sadka, 1985. "The Effects of an Equiproportional Transport Improvement in a Fully-Closed Monocentric City," Working Papers 620, Queen's University, Department of Economics.
  12. Pines, David & Sadka, Efraim, 1986. "Comparative statics analysis of a fully closed city," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 1-20, July.
  13. Thomas J. Nechyba & Randall P. Walsh, 2004. "Urban Sprawl," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(4), pages 177-200, Fall.
  14. Fujita, Masahisa & Ogawa, Hideaki, 1982. "Multiple equilibria and structural transition of non-monocentric urban configurations," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 161-196, May.
  15. Sasaki, Komei, 1990. "Income class, modal choice, and urban spatial structure," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 322-343, May.
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