Economic Viability of Improving Boston MBTA Commuter Rail Service

Authors: Anthony Jreije*, Clark University
Topics: Transportation Geography, Urban and Regional Planning
Keywords: Trains, Boston, MA, Economics
Session Type: Poster
Day: 4/11/2018
Start / End Time: 1:20 PM / 3:00 PM
Room: Napoleon Foyer/Common St. Corridor, Sheraton, 3rd Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


As more people move to urban areas to find jobs, cities become more and more congested, generating more negative externalities. I propose that investing in sustainable development projects such as public transport infrastructure can lead to more growth through both an improvement of real estate prices in peripheral areas and a reduction in congestion costs. In the age of market-dominated development, why not attempt to bring positive change through emphasizing the economic incentives for maintaining and upgrading public infrastructure? These projects will attract more residents through increasing access to the Central Business District and reducing congestion. Using Boston and the MBTA Commuter Rail System as a case study, I will explore the benefits associated with Commuter Rail access. An analysis of real estate prices in towns with a commuter rail station compared to ones with similar characteristics but without the rails will help explain some of the benefits. I will also examine the negative externalities associated with residing close to a commuter rail station such as higher taxes or congestion to better evaluate the net benefit.

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