Policy Documents

Urban Policy: A Time for a Paradigm Shift

July 1, 2013

This report reviews the dominant strains of urban land-use and transport policy (urban containment) in metropolitan areas and evaluates its longer-term impact on households and the economy.
Large cities are a relatively recent phenomenon in the world, having proliferated only over the last 200 years. Generally, cities have grown because of the economic opportunities that they have provided for residents. That being the case, the purpose of cities is to facilitate greater affluence. This is best measured by maximizing household discretionary incomes (the income left over after taxes and basic necessities). All things being equal, higher household incomes lead to lower levels of poverty.