Chasing the city that cannot stop: Exploring transportation and urban co-development in São Paulo’s history
Keywords:transportation, transit, land use, São Paulo, Granger Causality, Lantin American cities, periphery, urban expansion
We present a historical analysis of transportation and urban development in São Paulo (Brazil), attempting to discern Granger causal effects using historical land-use and transportation data from 1881 to 2013. Our results align with the hypothesis commonly stated in the literature about the relevance of road transportation in São Paulo’s peripheral urban expansion during the twentieth century. We find, however, more complex relationships, and changes in them, over time. Over the entire 130 years, we find that urban expansion and road development pushed and pulled each other, in a somewhat “orderly” way. On the other hand, while roads are not linked to densification, we find that mass transit infrastructure did lead to building densification. Distinguishing among distinct periods adds further insights. Examining São Paulo’s “streetcar era” we find joint development of streetcar lines and urban expansion – evidence of joint development consistent with “streetcar suburbs.” Streetcars also led to building densification during this early period. In subsequent decades, up until the mid-1970s, mass transit investments are virtually non-existent and road transportation essentially chases urban expansion, not vice versa. Finally, the last four decades reveal a return to “orderly” patterns of road expansion and urbanization but no evidence of mass transit infrastructure’s effects on urbanization or densification. The analysis illustrates how transportation investment choices have important consequences for urban growth, exerting long-lasting influences on its urban form.
Angrist, J. D., & Pischke, J. S. (2008). Mostly harmless econometrics: An empiricist's companion. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
Badoe, D. A., & Miller, E. J. (2000). Transportation-land-use interaction: Empirical findings in North America, and their implications for modeling. Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment, 5(4), 235–263.
Baum-Snow, N. (2007). Did highways cause suburbanization? The Quarterly Journal of Economics, 122(2), 775–805.
Beck, N., & Katz, J. N. (1995). What to do (and not to do) with time-series cross-section data. The American Political Science Review, 89(3), 634–647.
Boarnet, M. G., & Haughwout, A. F. (2000). Do highways matter? Evidence and policy implications of highways’ influence on metropolitan development. Washington, DC: Brookings Institute Center on Urban and Metropolitan Policy.
Bonduki, N. G., & Rolnik, R. (1979). Periferias: Ocupação do espaço e reprodução da força de trabalho. São Paulo: FAU-USP/Fundação para Pesquisa Ambiental.
Caldeira, T. P. R. (2000). City of walls: Crime, segregation and citizenship in Sao Paulo. Berkeley, CA: University of California.
Capoccia, G. (2016). Critical junctures. In O. Fioretos, T. G. Falleti, & A. Sheingate (Eds.), The Oxford handbook of historical institutionalism (pp. 1–22). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
Cervero, R., & Hansen, M. (2002). Induced travel demand and induced road investment: A simultaneous equation analysis. Journal of Transport Economics and Policy, 36(3), 469–490.
Cervero, R., & Seskin, S. (1995). An evaluation of the relationships between transit and urban form. Washington, DC: Transit Cooperative Research Program, Transportation Research Board.
Debrezion, G., Pels, E., & Rietveld, P. (2007). The impact of railway stations on residential and commercial property value: A meta-analysis. Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, 35(2), 161–180.
Eletropaulo. (1986a). Bondes, terrenos e especulação. São Paulo: Cadernos História e Energia, 1.
Eletropaulo. (1986b). O Metrô da light. São Paulo: Cadernos História e Energia, 8.
EMPLASA. (2002). Expansão da area urbana da região metropolitana de São Paulo - Relatório de pesquisa. São Paulo: EMPLASA.
Fulton, L. M., Noland, R. B., Meszler, D. J., & Thomas, J. V. (2000). A statistical analysis of induced travel effects in the U.S. Mid-Atlantic Region. Journal of Transportation Statistics, 3(1), 1–14.
Giesbrecht, R. M. (2001). Um dia o trem passou por aqui: A história e as estórias dos trens de passageiros no Estado de São Paulo e as saudades que eles deixaram. São Paulo: Studio Quadro.
Giesbrecht, R. M. (2018). Estações ferroviárias do Brasil. Retrieved from http://www.estacoesferroviarias.com.br
Giuliano, G. (2004). Land-use impacts of transportation investments: Highways and transit. In S. Hanson (Ed), The geography of urban transportation (pp. 237–273). New York: Guildford Press.
Glaeser, E., & Ponzetto, G. (2017). The political economy of transportation investment. Economics of Transportation, 13, 4–26.
Granger, C. W. J. (1969), Investigating causal relations by econometric models and cross spectral methods. Econometrics, 35, 224–238.
Guerra, E. (2014). Mexico City’s suburban land use and transit connection: The effects of the Line B Metro expansion, Transport Policy, 32, 105–114.
Huang, H. (1996). The land-use impacts of urban rail transit systems. Journal of Planning Literature, 11(1), 17–30.
Kako, I. S. (2013). O papel dos trilhos na estruturação territorial da cidade de São Paulo de 1867 a 1930. São Paulo: Universidade de São Paulo.
Kasraian, D., Maat, K., Stead, D., & van Wee, B. (2016). Long-term impacts of transport infrastructure networks on land-use change: An international review of empirical studies. Transport Reviews, 36(6), 772–792.
King, D. (2011). Developing densely: Estimating the effect of subway growth on New York City land uses. Journal of Transport and Land Use, 4(2), 19–32.
Knight, R., & Trygg, L. (1977). Evidence of land-use impacts of rapid transit systems. Transportation, 6(3), 231–247.
Kowarick, L., & Frúgoli, H. (2016). Pluralidade urbana em São Paulo. São Paulo: Editora 34, Fapesp.
Langenbuch, J. (1971). A estruturação da grande São Paulo: Estudo de geografia urbana. Rio de Janeiro: Fundação IBGE.
Levinson, D. (2008a). Density and dispersion: The co-development of land use and rail in London. Journal of Economic Geography, 8, 55–77.
Levinson, D. (2008b). The orderliness hypothesis: The correlation of rail and housing development in London. Journal of Transport History, 29(1), 98–114.
Lisbôa, L. (2019). Transporte de Londres, Paris e São Paulo: Aspectos fundamentais do planejamento e expansão das redes de transporte estruturais e sua relação com a organização do tecido urbano. São Paulo: Universidade de São Paulo.
Martínez, L. M., & Viegas, J. M. (2009). Effects of transportation accessibility on residential property values: A hedonic price model in the Lisbon metropolitan area. Transportation Research Record, 2115, 127–137.
McMillen, D., & McDonald, J. (2004). Reaction of house prices to a new rapid transit line: Chicago’s Midway Line, 1983-1999. Real Estate Economics, 32(3), 463–486.
Mendes, D. de P. S. (1992). Bonde ou luz? Eis a questão: A crise existencial da Light no começo dos anos 30. Memória. São Paulo: Eletropaulo, 13.
Metrô. (1977). Pesquisa de Mobilidade da Região Metropolitana de São Paulo 1977: síntese das informaçoes (Pesquisa Domiciliar).
Metrô. (1987). Pesquisa de Mobilidade da Região Metropolitana de São Paulo 1987: síntese das informaçoes (Pesquisa Domiciliar).
Metrô. (1999). Pesquisa de Mobilidade da Região Metropolitana de São Paulo 1997: síntese das informaçoes (Pesquisa Domiciliar).
Metrô. (2008). Pesquisa de Mobilidade da Região Metropolitana de São Paulo 2007: síntese das informaçoes (Pesquisa Domiciliar).
Metrô. (2019). Pesquisa de Mobilidade da Região Metropolitana de São Paulo 2017: síntese das informaçoes (Pesquisa Domiciliar).
Mohammad, S., Graham, D., Melo, P., & Anderson, R. (2013). A meta-analysis of the impact of rail projects on land and property values. Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, 50, 158–170.
Muller, P. (2004). Transportation and urban form - Stages in the spatial evolution of the American metropolis. In S. Hanson (Ed), The geography of urban transportation (pp. 59–85). New York: Guildford Press.
Rodríguez, D., & Mojica, C. (2009). Capitalization of BRT network expansions effects into prices of non-expansion areas. Transportation Research Part A, 43, 560–571.
Rolnik, R. (1995). The city and the law: Legislation, urban policy and territories in the city of São Paulo (1886-1936). New York: New York University.
Ryan, S. (1999). Property values and transportation facilities: Finding the transportation-land use connection. Journal of Planning Literature, 13(4), 412–427.
Silva, A. (2015). Tudo é passageiro: Expansão urbana, transporte público e o extermínio dos bondes em São Paulo. São Paulo: Annablume.
Somekh, N. (2014). A cidade vertical e o urbanismo modernizador. São Paulo: Editora Mackenzie.
Stiel, W. C. (1978). História dos transportes coletivos em São Paulo. São Paulo: McGraw-Hill do Brasil, Ed. da Universidade de São Paulo.
United Nations. (2019). World urbanization prospects: The 2018 revision (ST/ESA/SER.A/366). New York: United Nations, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Population Division.
Velze, R. (1968). Os transportes coletivos em São Paulo. In O. Pimentel & J. F. Marcondes (Eds.), São Paulo: Espírito, povo instituições. São Paulo: Pioneira Editora.
Vitte, C., & Imaeda, R. (2007). Transportes coletivos e urbanização na cidade de São Paulo na primeira metade do século XX: Aspectos políticos-institucionais, atores, alianças e interesses. GEOUSP - Espaço e Tempo, 21, 67–84.
Warner, S. B. (1978). Streetcar suburbs: The process of growth in Boston, 1870-1900. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Xie, F. & Levinson, D. (2010). How streetcars shaped suburbanization: A Granger causality analysis of land use and transit in the Twin Cities. Journal of Economic Geography, 10(3), 453–470.
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2021 Adriano Borges Costa, P. Christopher Zegras, Ciro Biderman
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Authors who publish with JTLU agree to the following terms: 1) Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial License 4.0 that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal. 2) Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal. 3) Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work.