The underground economy: Tracking the higher-order economic impacts of the São Paulo Subway System

Eduardo A. Haddad, Geoffrey J.D. Hewings, Alexandre A. Porsse, Eveline S. Van Leeuwen, Renato S. Vieira

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Over one million workers commute daily to São Paulo City center, using different modes of transportation. The São Paulo subway network reaches 74.2. km of length and is involved in around 20% of the commuting trips by public transportation, enhancing mobility and productivity of workers. This paper uses an integrated framework to assess the higher-order economic impacts of the existing underground metro infrastructure. We consider links between mobility, accessibility and labor productivity in the context of a detailed metropolitan system embedded in the national economy. Simulation results from a spatial computable general equilibrium model integrated to a transportation model suggest positive economic impacts that go beyond the city limits. While 32% of the impacts accrue to the city of São Paulo, the remaining 68% benefit other municipalities in the metropolitan area (11%), in the State of São Paulo (12.0%) and in the rest of the country (45%).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)18-30
Number of pages13
JournalTransportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice
StatePublished - Mar 1 2015


  • Accessibility
  • Economy-wide effects
  • Mobility
  • Productivity
  • Subway system
  • Transportation infrastructure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Transportation
  • Management Science and Operations Research


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