Document Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date




Publication Title

Building a Sustainable Transportation Infrastructure for Long-Term Economic Growth




This chapter focuses on how investment in the American rail infrastructure has shaped changes in the population and residential patterns. Specifically, the chapter examines the association between commuter rail systems, urban rail transit systems, and the movement of the college-educated young into the inner city. Two hypotheses are proposed about the characteristics of rail systems and the relationship to the growth in the percentage of young college graduates residing in close-in neighborhoods. Using a sample of central cities within the 51 largest metropolitan areas in the U.S., the chapter compares the growth in young college graduates (ages 25 to 34 years) across cities with the different transit configurations. Using correlation analysis, the chapter explores the relationship between the presence of rail transit and the residential location choices of this population group. In the discussion and conclusion, the findings are summarized and implications for policy and sustainability are discussed.


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0000-0003-3599-1417 (Yusuf)

Original Publication Citation

O'Connell, L. L., (Wie) Yusuf, J., Brock, T. J., & Blandford, B. (2019). From College to the City: Implications of Rail Transit on the Movement of the Young, College Educated Into the City Center. In O. Smirnova (Ed.), Building a Sustainable Transportation Infrastructure for Long-Term Economic Growth (pp. 93-112). Hershey, PA: IGI Global. doi:10.4018/978-1-5225-7396-8.ch005