Analysis of firm location and relocation in relation to Maryland and Washington, DC metro rail stations

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - north america, mode - subway/metro, land use - transit oriented development, land use - impacts, technology - geographic information systems


Firm location and relocation, GIS, National Establishment Time Series data (NETS), Transit-oriented-development (TOD)


Transit Oriented Development (TOD) has been increasingly adopted in regional transit plans as a tool to achieve economic growth. There is a paucity of literature examining the relationship between rail stations and firm locations by industry at the transit station level.

This study seeks to address four questions about the effects of station proximity: 1) What is the overall distribution of firms in relation to metro station locations? 2) What industries, if any, are more likely to locate near metro stations? 3) How does the presence of a transit station affect firm relocation within the region? 4) Does a new transit station result in a net gain of firms within the station proximity and for the region through the relocation process? This study examines the National Establishment Time Series (NETS) dataset for Washington, DC and its suburbs in Maryland, which contains longitudinal and cross-sectional firm-level data and firm-level relocation data for the years 1990–2010.

This study contributes to the literature on the effect of transit investment and TOD on economic development by suggesting future research agendas based on the descriptive analysis results, particularly addressing the question of net effects for locations beyond the immediate station area.


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


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