Public Transport and Urban Structure
Abstract: Public transport is central to commuting in most cities around the world. This paper studies the role of public transportation in shaping the urban structure. The main contribution of the paper is to propose a tractable model as a tool to study urban regulations and transport policies in the long-run. Using the classic monocentric city framework, we model public transport as a mode that can only be accessed by walking to a limited set of stops. By incorporating a discrete transport mode choice and income heterogeneity, the model remains simple yet can reproduce non-monotonous urban gradients observed in cities with public transport, and well-observed spatial patterns of sorting by income and use of public transport. For example, it can reproduce an inverted U-shape of transit usage along the city.