How Vehicle Access Enables Low-Income Households to Live in Better Neighborhoods

Jae Sik Jeon, Casey Dawkins, Rolf Pendall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Transportation influences residential location choices generally, but low-income households often face unique constraints because of a lack of access to automobiles. This article examines how vehicle access influences the type of neighborhoods in which low-income households are able to secure housing following a move to a new neighborhood. We rely on data from the Moving to Opportunity program to estimate locational attainment models, including a wide range of variables capturing various dimensions of neighborhood opportunity. Our findings suggest that auto access enables low-income households to secure housing in neighborhoods that exhibit a wide range of positive neighborhood attributes, including lower poverty rates, lower housing vacancy rates, higher median household income, higher labor-force participation, and higher adult high school graduation rates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)920-939
Number of pages20
JournalHousing Policy Debate
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2 2018


  • HUD (U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development)
  • Housing Choice Voucher
  • Moving to Opportunity
  • automobiles
  • geography of opportunity
  • locational attainment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development
  • Urban Studies
  • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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