Urban spatial location advantage: The dual of the transportation problem and its implications for land-use and transport planning


Enda Murphy

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - europe, land use - planning, land use - impacts, mode - car


Transportation problem, Excess commuting, Dual variables, Jobs-housing balance, Location advantage, Shadow prices


Numerous recent studies have investigated the relationship between the location of jobs and housing in urban areas and how this relates to urban commuting patterns. Few have utilised the dual of the transportation problem of linear programming (TPLP) to provide insights into these relationships Accordingly, this analysis utilises the TPLP to determine dual variable values (shadow prices) for a study area in Dublin, Ireland. The approach determines the pattern of relative location advantage for the peak and off-peak travel periods and for public and private transport for 1991 and 2001. The results are set against the expected results for hypothetical urban structures. The results show that the pattern of relative location advantage has altered sharply over the study period for off-peak trip-making but has remained more or less the same for trip-making in the peak period. For the off-peak period, the pattern of relative location advantage has shifted from the central area to the periphery specifically for private transport trips; for public transport, the pattern has remained focused on the city centre. This indicates that private transport users can react more quickly to changes in the distribution of land-use activities than their public transport counterparts due to the relatively fixed nature of the latter mode. This implies that the public transport network needs to be reorganized to better reflect the revised pattern of trip-making specifically for the off-peak period. The results demonstrate the value of using the approach for providing information about the spatial organisation of land uses within cities and where future development may be targeted.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Elsevier, copyright remains with them.


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