Through estimation of a discrete choice model of residential location, this study argues that commute time remains a dominant determinant of residential location at the regional scale, and that provision of affordable housing near employment concentrations can influence residential location decisions for low-to-moderate-income, single-worker households. However, the significance of jobs-hunting balance is not in reducing congestion; even when successful, such policies will have little impact on average travel speeds. Rather, the relaxation of suburban regulation that could lead to improved matches between home and workplace is seen as enhancing the range of households' choices about residence and transportation.
Journal The Annals of Regional Science
Issue Volume 41, Number 2 / June, 2007
Mark W. Horner
Abstract Issues of growth, especially the spatial nature of recent urban development and its implications for travel patterns, have received a great deal of attention. In particular, questions persist as to how the spatial distribution of workers and jobs influences commute patterns. This paper investigates changes in commuting and land use patterns using measures of jobs-housing balance, commuting efficiency and other statistics. A smaller urban area is chosen for study (Tallahassee, FL, USA)and data on its workers, jobs, and commute patterns are obtained from the Census Transportation Planning Package for 1990 and 2000. The key research questions investigated probe whether there were substantial changes in urban form and commuting over the period. A two-tiered approach is taken where change is explored at the regional and local scales using GIS, optimization procedures, and inferential statistical techniques. The results reveal the extent of the spatial changes in the study area between 1990 and 2000. Major findings included stability in urban structure over the time period, as well as a persistent strong relationship between land use and commute patterns. These results are discussed in light of their implications for other cities and for future work.
Study: Americans Commute an Average 25 Minutes
Morning Edition, October 12, 2007 · A new study shows the average American commutes an average of 25 minutes. That's almost nine full days a year behind the wheel. Commutes have worsened over the last two decades because highways haven't kept pace with population growth and urban sprawl. If you work in New York City, your average commute is the worst in the country: almost 36 minutes long. For the nation's easiest commutes, you have to turn to the colder climes of Omaha and Buffalo.