Transportation and Urban Compactness

This chapter explores the relationships between transportation and the degree of urban compactness. There are several major issues. Higher densities may help to reduce automobile dependence by facilitating shifts to other modes (e.g. transit, bicycling, or walking). On the other hand, to the extent that motorized modes dominate, higher densities mean more congestion and slower travel speeds. Another question is the scope for promoting compactness, especially in the United States of America (USA), by planning interventions rather than by the pressures of rising land prices. There is a disconnect between the increasing emphasis on policies to make metropolitan areas denser and the overwhelming empirical evidence that most US metropolitan areas are becoming less dense. The experiences of Western Europe and many other parts of the world are similar.

  • Availability:
  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Published as Volume 5, Handbooks in Transport series, ISSN 1472-7889.
  • Corporate Authors:


    The Boulevard, Langford Lane
    Kidlington, Oxford  United Kingdom  OX5 1GB
  • Authors:
    • Richardson, Harry W
    • Bae, Ghang-Hee Christine
  • Publication Date: 2004


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Print
  • Edition: First
  • Features: References;
  • Pagination: pp 255-267
  • Monograph Title: Handbook of Transport Geography and Spatial Systems

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01004000
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 0080441084
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Sep 14 2005 2:03PM