55th Congress of the European Regional Science Association: "World Renaissance: Changing roles for people and places", 25-28 August 2015, Lisbon, Portugal
This paper estimates the effects of airports on economic growth in US metropolitan areas. The estimation uses a novel technique to identify the effects of changes in local airport sizes from overall changes in the air travel network. Airport size is found to have a positive effect on local employment with an elasticity of 0.03. This means that for every job created at the airport by an exogenous increase in traffic, around four and a half jobs are created outside of the airport. The effect appears to be driven primarily by a positive effect on services employment. Airport size is also found to have positive effects on local GDP, the number of firms, population size, and the employment rate. The magnitudes of the effects on population and the employment rate suggest that the jobs created by airport expansion are spread between existing residents and workers who migrate to the area. In addition, the effect on local employment is concentrated in parts of the metropolitan area that are nearer the airport.
Transportation infrastructure Air travel Urban growth