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Economic Growth in Urban Regions: Implications for Future Transportation


  • Cervero, Robert


A central tenet of urban economics is that households, businesses, and industries compete for urban sites that enjoy accessibility advantages – whether to jobs, labor markets, raw materials, or distributions centers. Transportation investments trigger economic growth by enhancing accessibility, particularly in fast-growing, congested cities. Scholarly work suggests the impacts are more redistributive than generative – that is, new highways, rail investments, and busways shift growth that would have happened regardless from particular corridors and subareas of a region to others as opposed to prompting firm relocations and new business investments in a region. Factors other than transportation, such as “quality of life†, are increasingly influencing location choices of middle-income households and firms that are footloose. Of course, transportation and quality of life are not unrelated – public opinion polls reveal that being stuck in traffic is often first on the list among factors that are blamed for a declining quality of urban living.

Suggested Citation

  • Cervero, Robert, 2006. "Economic Growth in Urban Regions: Implications for Future Transportation," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt1nh6v0qw, University of California Transportation Center.
  • Handle: RePEc:cdl:uctcwp:qt1nh6v0qw

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Edward L. Glaeser & Matthew E. Kahn, 2001. "Decentralized Employment and the Transformation of the American City," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1912, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
    2. Shirley, Chad & Winston, Clifford, 2004. "Firm inventory behavior and the returns from highway infrastructure investments," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(2), pages 398-415, March.
    3. Edward L. Glaeser & Joshua D. Gottlieb, 2006. "Urban Resurgence and the Consumer City," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 43(8), pages 1275-1299, July.
    4. Matthew E. Kahn, 2000. "The environmental impact of suburbanization," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(4), pages 569-586.
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