The role of major infrastructure in subregional economic development: An empirical study of airports and cities

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The link between airports, air service and regional economic development has been well-established and used to justify airport expansion at the expense of local communities because of subsequent region-wide benefits. However, local-level spatial analyses based on US Economic Census data indicate that economic benefits in terms of professional and administrative employment do not necessarily offset local economic and quality of life costs. Furthermore, arguments for an airport city or aerotropolis phenomenon in the US context ignore the individual histories and morphologies of metropolitan areas and overstate the influence an airport has on the economic development of its region.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberlbu029
Pages (from-to)1125-1144
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Economic Geography
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2015
Externally publishedYes



  • Airports
  • Infrastructure
  • Professional services
  • Spatial distribution

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Economics and Econometrics

Cite this