The Impacts of State Growth Management Programmes: A Comparative Analysis
This paper examines the impact that alternative state planning frameworks have on five dimensions of urban development: density, the spatial extent of urbanised land area, property value, public expenditures on infrastructure and population change. The objectives of the analysis are threefold. First, the background discussion provides a brief overview of urban sprawl as a public policy problem and outlines how state growth management programmes attempt to respond to it. Secondly, the empirical analysis examines the effects of growth management in a cross-section of metropolitan counties during the 1982-97 time-period. The five outcome measures are modelled in a simultaneous equations framework in order to test several specific hypotheses about how state land-use policies affect the character of urban growth. Thirdly, the results of the empirical analysis are described within the context of previous research on the effectiveness of growth management. The findings suggest that state growth management programmes with strong consistency requirements and enforcement mechanisms hold much promise for reducing urban sprawl, while programmes that do not require consistency and/or have weak enforcement mechanisms may inadvertently contribute to it.