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The relationship between city center density and urban growth or decline


  • Kyle Fee
  • Daniel Hartley


In this paper we contrast the spatial patterns of population density and other demographic changes in growing versus shrinking MSAs from 1980 to 2010. We fi nd that, on average, shrinking MSAs show the steepest drop in population density near the Central Business District (CBD). Motivated by this fact, we explore the connection between changes in population density at the core of the MSA and MSA productivity. We find that changes in near-CBD population density are positively associated with per capita income growth at the MSA-level.

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  • Kyle Fee & Daniel Hartley, 2012. "The relationship between city center density and urban growth or decline," Working Paper 1213, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedcwp:1213

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Fu, Shihe, 2007. "Smart Cafe Cities: Testing human capital externalities in the Boston metropolitan area," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 61(1), pages 86-111, January.
    2. Albert Saiz, 2010. "The Geographic Determinants of Housing Supply," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 125(3), pages 1253-1296.
    3. Guerrieri, Veronica & Hartley, Daniel & Hurst, Erik, 2013. "Endogenous gentrification and housing price dynamics," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(C), pages 45-60.
    4. Veronica Guerrieri & Daniel Hartley & Erik Hurst, 2012. "Within-City Variation in Urban Decline: The Case of Detroit," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(3), pages 120-126, May.
    5. 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.
    6. Leah Platt Boustan & Allison Shertzer, 2010. "Demography and Population Loss from Central Cities, 1950-2000," NBER Working Papers 16435, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    7. Nathaniel Baum-Snow, 2007. "Did Highways Cause Suburbanization?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(2), pages 775-805.
    8. Edward L. Glaeser & Joshua D. Gottlieb & Kristina Tobio, 2012. "Housing Booms and City Centers," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(3), pages 127-133, May.
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    Cited by:

    1. Sanghoon Lee & Jeffrey Lin, 2018. "Natural Amenities, Neighbourhood Dynamics, and Persistence in the Spatial Distribution of Income," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 85(1), pages 663-694.
    2. Hwang, Jackelyn & Lin, Jeffrey, 2016. "What Have We Learned About the Causes of Recent Gentrification?," Working Papers 16-20, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.

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    Regional economics ; Urban economics;

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