Cardiff University | Prifysgol Caerdydd ORCA
Online Research @ Cardiff 
WelshClear Cookie - decide language by browser settings

The decentralising metropolis: Economic diversity and commuting in the US suburbs

Lee, Shin Shim, Webster, Christopher John and Seo, J. G. 2006. The decentralising metropolis: Economic diversity and commuting in the US suburbs. Urban Studies 43 (13) , pp. 2525-2549. 10.1080/00420980601038370

Full text not available from this repository.


This paper investigates historical changes in economic structure and the spatial distribution of jobs and commuting patterns during a period of consolidating suburban decentralisation in US cities. The analysis of selected US metropolitan areas is based on data drawn from the 1980 and 1990 PUMS (public use microdata samples). First, the paper compares changes in employment composition between regions and between two geographical subdivisions in each of the metropolitan areas: the suburb and the central city. A diversity index is then measured for suburbs and central cities and an intertemporal comparison is made. Finally, changes in travel characteristics are discussed and analysed by industrial sector and geographical sub-division. The analysis shows a strong growth of suburban cities compared with central cities in each region, increased urbanisation economies in suburban cities and the dominance of suburb-to-suburb commuting. The historical pattern gives urban analysts and planners in Europe and elsewhere much to think about: in particular, the self-reinforcing nature of suburban agglomeration economies, the influence of growing suburban employment centres on commute patterns, the growth of centre-to-suburb commutes and the dominance of suburb-to-suburb commutes; and the ability of cities to reshape themselves as individual firms and households adopt strategies that lower the costs of transacting labour, services and all manner of commodities.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Geography and Planning (GEOPL)
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > G Geography (General)
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Publisher: SAGE Publications
ISSN: 0042-0980
Last Modified: 07 Nov 2019 09:09

Citation Data

Cited 37 times in Google Scholar. View in Google Scholar

Cited 31 times in Scopus. View in Scopus. Powered By Scopus® Data

Actions (repository staff only)

Edit Item Edit Item