Download this Paper Open PDF in Browser

City Structure and Congestion Costs

49 Pages Posted: 6 May 2010  

Francesco Trebbi

Vancouver School of Economics; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Matilde Bombardini

University of British Columbia (UBC)

Date Written: March 1, 2010

Abstract

This paper presents a model and an automated methodology for decomposing congestion costs in cities. We model a city as a directed graph and define the planner’s problem of finding the subgraph minimizing the congestion costs (latency) of endogenously-routing traffic flowing through the subgraph. We show that the minimal total latency subnetwork displays congestion directly proportional to city population. By applying an automated search algorithm on a widely available Internet mapping application, and hence sampling from the empirically implemented subgraphs, the paper estimates the congestion-minimizing distortions of city transit networks in a large sample of United States and Italian cities.

Suggested Citation

Trebbi, Francesco and Bombardini, Matilde, City Structure and Congestion Costs (March 1, 2010). Chicago Booth Research Paper No. 10-20. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1600786 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1600786

Francesco Trebbi (Contact Author)

Vancouver School of Economics ( email )

University of British Columbia
6000 Iona Dr.
Vancouver Canada, BC V6T 1L4
Canada

HOME PAGE: http://faculty.arts.ubc.ca/ftrebbi/

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) ( email )

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Matilde Bombardini

University of British Columbia (UBC) ( email )

2329 West Mall
Vancouver, British Columbia BC V6T 1Z4
Canada

Paper statistics

Downloads
121
Rank
196,893
Abstract Views
858