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Urban spatial structure and suburbanisation. The case of the Barcelona Metropolitan

  • Ivan Muñiz

    ()

    (Departament d'Economia Aplicada, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona)

  • Ana Galindo
  • Miguel Angel García

    (Departament d'Economia Aplicada, Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona)

Registered author(s):

    The metropolitan spatial structure displays various patterns, sometimes monocentricity and sometimes multicentricity, which seems much more complicated than the exponential density function used in classic works such as Clark (1961), Muth (1969) or Mills (1973) among others, can effectively represent. It seems that a more flexible density function,such as cubic spline function (Anderson (1982), Zheng (1991), etc.) to describe the density-accessibility relationship is needed. Also, accessibility, the fundamental determinant of density variations, is only partly captured by the inclusion of distance to the city centre as an explanatory variable. Steen (1986) has proposed to correct that miss-especification by including an additional gradient for distance to the nearest transportation axis. In identifying the determinants of urban spatial structure in the context of inter-urban systems, some of the variables proposed by Muth (1969), Mills (1973) and Alperovich (1983) such as city age or population, make no sense in the case of a single urban system. All three criticism to the exponential density function and its determinants apply for the Barcelona Metropolitan Region, a polycentric conurbation structured on well defined transportation axes.

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    File URL: http://www.ecap.uab.es/RePEc/doc/wp0202.pdf
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    Paper provided by Department of Applied Economics at Universitat Autonoma of Barcelona in its series Working Papers with number wp0202.

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    Length: 22 pages
    Date of creation: Jan 2002
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:uab:wprdea:wp0202
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    1. Anderson, John E., 1982. "Cubic-spline urban-density functions," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 155-167, September.
    2. GOFFETTE-NAGOT, Florence & SCHMITT, Bertrand, 1997. "Agglomération economies and spatial configuration in rural areas," LATEC - Document de travail - Economie (1991-2003) 1997-16, LATEC, Laboratoire d'Analyse et des Techniques EConomiques, CNRS UMR 5118, Université de Bourgogne.
    3. Edward L. Glaeser & Matthew E. Kahn & Jordan Rappaport, 2000. "Why Do The Poor Live In Cities?," Harvard Institute of Economic Research Working Papers 1891, Harvard - Institute of Economic Research.
    4. McDonald, John F., 1989. "Econometric studies of urban population density: A survey," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 26(3), pages 361-385, November.
    5. Lahiri, Kajal & Numrich, Richard P., 1983. "An econometric study on the dynamics of urban spatial structure," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(1), pages 55-79, July.
    6. Steen, Robert C., 1986. "Nonubiquitous transportation and urban population density gradients," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 97-106, July.
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