Spatial Justice in Kansas City: Transportation, Uneven Development, and Intergenerational Inequality

Authors: Jordan Shipley*,
Topics: Transportation Geography, Urban Geography, Economic Geography
Keywords: geographical political economy, urban geography, economic geography, social justice, accessibility
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/13/2018
Start / End Time: 1:20 PM / 3:00 PM
Room: Rampart, Sheraton, 5th Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


This paper employs an interdisciplinary approach to investigating uneven development and intergenerational inequalities across communities in the Kansas City metropolitan region. Alongside a history of urban sprawl and racial residential segregation, the Kansas City metropolitan region serves as a classic exemplar of land-capital dynamics, structural discrimination, and car-centric urban transportation systems in the United States. A number of processes of institutionalized racial discrimination carried out across the country were first implemented in Kansas City, MO as tools in the process of speculative suburban real estate development. These historical processes provide a straightforward example of the spatiality of real-financial linkages at the nexus of real estate, finance, transportation, and structural racial discrimination. While an emphasis is placed on the role of the transportation system, the production of accessibility occurs at the intersection of these real-financial linkages. Using the tools of geographic information systems (GIS) and exploratory spatial econometrics, this paper presents an analysis of the production of accessibility in Kansas City. The investigation reveals an uneven landscape of access to employment, economic development, and environmental health.

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