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The long-run impact of zoning: Institutional hysteresis and durable capital in Seattle, 1920–2015

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  • Twinam, Tate

Abstract

This paper examines the coevolution of land use and zoning in Seattle from 1920 to 2015. Multiple waves of zoning and land use conversion data at the parcel level allow for a decomposition of the long-run effects of zoning and an exploration of the mechanisms through which zoning influenced future land use. In particular, I disentangle short-run impacts on land use from long-term institutional hysteresis, showing that the latter played a sizable role in shaping future land use. Additionally, data on variances allows me to examine early compliance levels, an underexplored topic with implications for long-run impacts. While much has been written about persistence in urban form due to purely economic forces, relatively little research has explored how institutional forces can entrench or alter this trajectory, and I find that such institutional constraints can have substantial influence.

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  • Twinam, Tate, 2018. "The long-run impact of zoning: Institutional hysteresis and durable capital in Seattle, 1920–2015," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 73(C), pages 155-169.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:regeco:v:73:y:2018:i:c:p:155-169
    DOI: 10.1016/j.regsciurbeco.2018.08.004
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Munneke, Henry J., 2005. "Dynamics of the urban zoning structure: An empirical investigation of zoning change," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(3), pages 455-473, November.
    2. Murray, Cameron K. & Frijters, Paul, 2016. "Clean money, dirty system: Connected landowners capture beneficial land rezoning," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 93(C), pages 99-114.
    3. Allison Shertzer & Tate Twinam & Randall P. Walsh, 2016. "Race, Ethnicity, and Discriminatory Zoning," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 8(3), pages 217-246, July.
    4. 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.
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    1. Dietrich Earnhart & Sarah Jacobson & Yusuke Kuwayama & Richard T. Woodward, 2019. "Discretionary Exemptions from Environmental Regulation: Flexibility for Good or for Ill," Department of Economics Working Papers 2019-11, Department of Economics, Williams College.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    K11; N92; R14; R52;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • K11 - Law and Economics - - Basic Areas of Law - - - Property Law
    • N92 - Economic History - - Regional and Urban History - - - U.S.; Canada: 1913-
    • R14 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Land Use Patterns
    • R52 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Regional Government Analysis - - - Land Use and Other Regulations

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