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Equity and the social distribution of job accessibility in Detroit


  • Joe Grengs


Racial minorities and low-income households are confined to the urban core of many metropolitan regions in the United States while a growing share of jobs is located at the suburban periphery. Yet many studies of transportation accessibility find that these social groups are not disadvantaged in their ability to reach jobs because central locations are a benefit in the metropolitan competition for jobs. To what extent is the ability to reach jobs different among categories of race, ethnicity, income, and poverty status? A comparison is made among social groups using an innovative method of accessibility incorporating household income-level to account for the vast difference in accessi-bility between the modes of automobile and public transit. Most racial minorities and low-income persons are found to be advantaged in their ability to reach jobs, but a troubling number are nevertheless extremely disadvantaged by virtue of lacking an automobile in spite of residing in advantaged locations. Keywords: accessibility, land use, urban form, social equality, commute

Suggested Citation

  • Joe Grengs, 2012. "Equity and the social distribution of job accessibility in Detroit," Environment and Planning B: Planning and Design, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 39(5), pages 785-800, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:pio:envirb:v:39:y:2012:i:5:p:785-800

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    Cited by:

    1. Kotval-K, Zeenat & Vojnovic, Igor, 2016. "A socio-ecological exploration into urban form: The environmental costs of travel," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 128(C), pages 87-98.

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