Comparing Methods for Measuring Excess Commuting and Jobs–Housing Balance: Empirical Analysis of Land Use Changes

Recently, several interrelated methodologies have emerged as part of research aimed at quantifying concepts of excess commuting and jobs–housing balance. These efforts are motivated by the search for connections between land use and transportation, including understanding the role of urban form in shaping commuting patterns as well as modeling the jobs–housing balance of a region. The validity of these approaches has been debated in the literature, particularly with respect to their appropriateness for addressing various substantive questions regarding land use and transport issues. This paper examines some of the debate surrounding these jobs–housing metrics, particularly in the context of how they are used in comparative urban analyses that seek to explore urban structural changes over time or space. To explore this issue, a series of hypothetical urban growth scenarios was designed; the scenarios are used to compare the metrics’ performance in a single city over a hypothetical time horizon. Results suggest that each measure may not wholly address each piece of the commuting and jobs–housing puzzle, indicating that researchers may wish to use a combination of metrics to garner the most insights into land use–transportation changes.


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  • Accession Number: 01155797
  • Record Type: Publication
  • ISBN: 9780309160445
  • Report/Paper Numbers: 10-2788
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Jan 25 2010 11:21AM