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Transport Subsidies, System Choice, and Urban Sprawl

  • Jan K. Brueckner

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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File URL: http://www.cesifo-group.de/portal/page/portal/DocBase_Content/WP/WP-CESifo_Working_Papers/wp-cesifo-2003/wp-cesifo-2003-11/cesifo1_wp1090.pdf
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Paper provided by CESifo Group Munich in its series CESifo Working Paper Series with number 1090.

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Date of creation: 2003
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Handle: RePEc:ces:ceswps:_1090
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  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. Voith, Richard & Gyourko, Joseph, 2002. "Capitalization of federal taxes, the relative price of housing, and urban form: density and sorting effects," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 32(6), pages 673-690, November.
  4. 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.
  5. Edward L. Glaeser & Matthew E. Kahn, 2003. "Sprawl and Urban Growth," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 2004, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
  6. 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.
  7. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521346627 is not listed on IDEAS
  8. 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.
  9. 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.
  10. 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.
  11. Small, Kenneth A. & Gomez-Ibanez, Jose A., 1999. "Urban transportation," Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, in: P. C. Cheshire & E. S. Mills (ed.), Handbook of Regional and Urban Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 46, pages 1937-1999 Elsevier.
  12. Thomas J. Nechyba & Randall P. Walsh, 2004. "Urban Sprawl," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 18(4), pages 177-200, Fall.
  13. Sasaki, Komei, 1990. "Income class, modal choice, and urban spatial structure," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 322-343, May.
  14. Wheaton, William C., 1974. "A comparative static analysis of urban spatial structure," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 9(2), pages 223-237, October.
  15. 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.
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