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Congestion Cost and the Use of Land for Streets

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  • Robert M. Solow

Abstract

The traditional model of the equilibrium economic geography of a monocentric city is generalized to introduce congestion costs as well as distance costs of the transportation. This has the effect of generating more curvature in the equilibrium rent gradient than the early theory had suggested. More important, if congestion tolls are not charged on crowded roads, land rents will reflect the private costs of transportation, not the full social cost. Market land values will then be faulty guides to land use, and cost-benefit analyses will give misleading results. Some sample computations suggest that the result will often be to cause more land to be taken for use as streets than is socially desirable, especially nearer the center of the city

Suggested Citation

  • Robert M. Solow, 1973. "Congestion Cost and the Use of Land for Streets," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 4(2), pages 602-618, Autumn.
  • Handle: RePEc:rje:bellje:v:4:y:1973:i:autumn:p:602-618
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Westfield, Fred M, 1971. "Methodology of Evaluating Economic Regulation," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 61(2), pages 211-217, May.
    2. MacAvoy, Paul W, 1971. "The Regulation-Induced Shortage of Natural Gas," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 14(1), pages 167-199, April.
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    Cited by:

    1. Li, Zhi-Chun & Guo, Qian-Wen & Lam, William H.K. & Wong, S.C., 2015. "Transit technology investment and selection under urban population volatility: A real option perspective," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 318-340.
    2. Voith, Richard, 1998. "Parking, Transit, and Employment in a Central Business District," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 43-58, July.
    3. Theis Theisen, 2011. "Household size and city structure," ERES eres2011_231, European Real Estate Society (ERES).
    4. Edward L. Glaeser & Joseph Gyourko, 2005. "Urban Decline and Durable Housing," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(2), pages 345-375, April.
    5. Duranton, Gilles & Puga, Diego, 2004. "Micro-foundations of urban agglomeration economies," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics,in: J. V. Henderson & J. F. Thisse (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 4, chapter 48, pages 2063-2117 Elsevier.
    6. Zhang, Wenjia & Kockelman, Kara M., 2016. "Congestion pricing effects on firm and household location choices in monocentric and polycentric cities," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(C), pages 1-12.
    7. Janos Rechnitzer & Tamas Toth, 2014. "Economic Growth Paths Similarities in European Union," Review of Economics & Finance, Better Advances Press, Canada, vol. 4, pages 93-104, November.
    8. Ross, Stephen L. & Yinger, John, 2000. "Timing Equilibria in an Urban Model with Congestion," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(3), pages 390-413, May.
    9. Sandler, Todd & Tschirhart, John T, 1980. "The Economic Theory of Clubs: An Evaluative Survey," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 18(4), pages 1481-1521, December.
    10. Wu, JunJie & Plantinga, Andrew J., 2003. "The influence of public open space on urban spatial structure," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 46(2), pages 288-309, September.
    11. Li, Zhi-Chun & Chen, Ya-Juan & Wang, Ya-Dong & Lam, William H.K. & Wong, S.C., 2013. "Optimal density of radial major roads in a two-dimensional monocentric city with endogenous residential distribution and housing prices," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(6), pages 927-937.
    12. Medda, F. & Nijkamp, P. & Rietveld, P., 2009. "Dynamic effects of external and private transport costs on urban shape: a morphogenetic perspective," Serie Research Memoranda 0038, VU University Amsterdam, Faculty of Economics, Business Administration and Econometrics.
    13. De Lara, Michel & de Palma, André & Kilani, Moez & Piperno, Serge, 2013. "Congestion pricing and long term urban form: Application to Paris region," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 282-295.
    14. Desmet, Klaus & Rappaport, Jordan, 2017. "The settlement of the United States, 1800–2000: The long transition towards Gibrat’s law," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 98(C), pages 50-68.
    15. Kantor, Yuval & Rietveld, Piet & van Ommeren, Jos, 2014. "Towards a general theory of mixed zones: The role of congestion," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 83(C), pages 50-58.
    16. Michel De Lara & André De Palma & Moez Kilani & Serge Piperno, 2008. "Congestion pricing and long term urban form: Application to Ile-de-France," Working Papers hal-00348439, HAL.
    17. Cheng Keat Tang, 2016. "Traffic Externalities and Housing Prices: Evidence from the London Congestion Charge," SERC Discussion Papers 0205, Spatial Economics Research Centre, LSE.
    18. Hadar, Yossi & Pines, David, 2004. "Population growth and its distribution between cities: positive and normative aspects," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(2), pages 125-154, March.
    19. repec:eee:transb:v:103:y:2017:i:c:p:269-290 is not listed on IDEAS
    20. Li, Zhi-Chun & Lam, William H.K. & Wong, S.C. & Choi, Keechoo, 2012. "Modeling the effects of integrated rail and property development on the design of rail line services in a linear monocentric city," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 46(6), pages 710-728.

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