The Causes and Consequences of Land Use Regulation: Evidence from Greater Boston

39 Pages Posted: 10 Oct 2006  

Edward L. Glaeser

Harvard University - John F. Kennedy School of Government, Department of Economics; Brookings Institution; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Bryce Adam Ward

Harvard University - Faculty of Arts and Sciences; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

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Date Written: October 2006

Abstract

Over the past 30 years, eastern Massachusetts has seen a remarkable combination of rising home prices and declining supply of new homes. The reductions in new supply don't appear to reflect a real lack of land, but instead reflect a response to man-made restrictions on development. In this paper, we examine the land-use regulations in greater Boston. There has been a large increase in the number of new regulations, which differ widely over space. Few variables, other than historical density and abundant recreational water, reliably predict these regulations. High lot sizes and other regulations are associated with less construction. The regulations boost prices by decreasing density, but density levels seem far too low to maximize total land value.

Suggested Citation

Glaeser, Edward L. and Ward, Bryce Adam, The Causes and Consequences of Land Use Regulation: Evidence from Greater Boston (October 2006). Harvard Institute of Economic Research Discussion Paper No. 2124. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=936351 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.936351

Edward L. Glaeser (Contact Author)

Harvard University - John F. Kennedy School of Government, Department of Economics ( email )

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Bryce Adam Ward

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