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The SSRC Library allows visitors to access materials related to self-sufficiency programs, practice and research. Visitors can view common search terms, conduct a keyword search or create a custom search using any combination of the filters at the left side of this page. To conduct a keyword search, type a term or combination of terms into the search box below, select whether you want to search the exact phrase or the words in any order, and click on the blue button to the right of the search box to view relevant results.

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  • Individual Author: Blagg, Kristin; Chingos, Matthew; Corcoran, Sean P.; Cordes, Sarah A.; Cowen, Joshua; Denice, Patrick ; Gross, Betheny; Lincove, Jane Arnold ; Sattin-Bajaj, Carolyn; Schwartz, Amy Ellen; Valant, Jon
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2018

    How to get to school is an important issue for families who want to send their children to schools outside their neighborhood and for education policymakers seeking to implement school choice policies that mitigate educational inequality. We analyze travel times between the homes and schools of nearly 190,000 students across five large US cities that offer a significant amount of educational choice:  Denver, Detroit, New Orleans, New York City, and Washington, DC. We find: 

    • Despite wide variation across cities in student transportation policy, there are similar student transportation patterns across our cities. Most students live within a 20-minute drive from home to their school. Older students travel farther to school than younger students, and black students travel farther than white or Hispanic students. Students who are not low income tend to travel farther than their low-income peers.
    • Particularly among older students, those enrolled in traditional public schools tend to travel as far, or in some cases farther, than those attending charter schools....

    How to get to school is an important issue for families who want to send their children to schools outside their neighborhood and for education policymakers seeking to implement school choice policies that mitigate educational inequality. We analyze travel times between the homes and schools of nearly 190,000 students across five large US cities that offer a significant amount of educational choice:  Denver, Detroit, New Orleans, New York City, and Washington, DC. We find: 

    • Despite wide variation across cities in student transportation policy, there are similar student transportation patterns across our cities. Most students live within a 20-minute drive from home to their school. Older students travel farther to school than younger students, and black students travel farther than white or Hispanic students. Students who are not low income tend to travel farther than their low-income peers.
    • Particularly among older students, those enrolled in traditional public schools tend to travel as far, or in some cases farther, than those attending charter schools.
    • Access to “high quality” high schools varies across cities, race and ethnicity, and on the quality measure used. However, ninth-grade students, on average, tend to live about a 10-minute drive from a “high quality” high school.
    • Access to a car can significantly increase the number of schools available to a family. Typical travel times to school by public transit are significantly greater than by car, especially in cities with less efficient transit networks.

    Just as there are inequalities and differences in students’ academic performance across these cities, we see parallel inequalities and differences in the distances that students travel and in the availability of nearby school options. Experiments in targeted policy interventions, such as implementing transportation vouchers for low-income parents of very young students, using yellow buses on circulating routes, or changing the way that school siting decisions are made, might yield pragmatic solutions that further level the playing field for a city’s most disadvantaged students. (Author abstract) 

  • Individual Author: Nelson, Arthur C.; Miller, Matt; Eskic, Dejan; Ganning, Joanna P.; Liu, Jenny H.; Ewing, Reid
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2015

    Literature suggests that rail transit improvements should be associated with more jobs and perhaps increasing share of jobs in a metropolitan area. Literature and some research also suggest that such improvements should increase the number of lower-wage jobs accessible to transit. In this paper, we assess both in the context of all 11 light rail transit systems built in metropolitan areas of fewer than eight million residents in the nation since 1981. Using census block-level job data over the period 2002 to 2011, we evaluate change in jobs and change in metropolitan area job share for all jobs, and lower- and upper-wage jobs for selected light rail transit (LRT) corridors and comparable corridors in each of these 11 metropolitan areas. Overall, we find little difference between the LRT and control corridors in both attracting new jobs and new lower-wage jobs, or in changing relative share of jobs compared to their metropolitan areas, though systems built since 2004 appear to have fared slightly better in both respects. We view these results as generally supportive of LRT...

    Literature suggests that rail transit improvements should be associated with more jobs and perhaps increasing share of jobs in a metropolitan area. Literature and some research also suggest that such improvements should increase the number of lower-wage jobs accessible to transit. In this paper, we assess both in the context of all 11 light rail transit systems built in metropolitan areas of fewer than eight million residents in the nation since 1981. Using census block-level job data over the period 2002 to 2011, we evaluate change in jobs and change in metropolitan area job share for all jobs, and lower- and upper-wage jobs for selected light rail transit (LRT) corridors and comparable corridors in each of these 11 metropolitan areas. Overall, we find little difference between the LRT and control corridors in both attracting new jobs and new lower-wage jobs, or in changing relative share of jobs compared to their metropolitan areas, though systems built since 2004 appear to have fared slightly better in both respects. We view these results as generally supportive of LRT employment-related objectives. Planning and policy implications are offered. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Hickey, Robert
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2013

    As transit systems expand and deliver improved connectivity, demand for housing within walking distance of transit stops is expected to grow, leading to higher rents and home prices that may price existing and prospective lower income households out of these neighborhoods. This paper examines the potential role of community land trusts (CLTs) to help address these concerns and ensure that transit-oriented development (TOD) is affordable to lower income households over the long term. Using case studies of CLTs engaged in TOD efforts in Atlanta, Denver, and the Twin Cities, this paper explores the opportunities, challenges, and supports that exist for CLTs eyeing future TOD endeavors. (author abstract)

    As transit systems expand and deliver improved connectivity, demand for housing within walking distance of transit stops is expected to grow, leading to higher rents and home prices that may price existing and prospective lower income households out of these neighborhoods. This paper examines the potential role of community land trusts (CLTs) to help address these concerns and ensure that transit-oriented development (TOD) is affordable to lower income households over the long term. Using case studies of CLTs engaged in TOD efforts in Atlanta, Denver, and the Twin Cities, this paper explores the opportunities, challenges, and supports that exist for CLTs eyeing future TOD endeavors. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Gustitus, Sandra; Simmons, Melody; Waller, Margy
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2008

    Changes in the location of work and residence in the last century have dramatically altered the landscape of our nation and changed the transportation needs of communities and workers. As a result, most communities now depend on private vehicle access to ensure that workers can fill and retain jobs by effectively managing the distance and travel time between work and home and access to goods and services not well served by public transit. In recent decades, policymakers have created new barriers to economic strength and employment by adopting legislation that makes license holding, and therefore access to legal driving, more tenuous—particularly for low-wage employees. In this report, we highlight promising initiatives and provide recommendations for policymakers to reduce the impact of economic license suspensions that are unrelated to driving competency and public safety. (author abstract)

    Changes in the location of work and residence in the last century have dramatically altered the landscape of our nation and changed the transportation needs of communities and workers. As a result, most communities now depend on private vehicle access to ensure that workers can fill and retain jobs by effectively managing the distance and travel time between work and home and access to goods and services not well served by public transit. In recent decades, policymakers have created new barriers to economic strength and employment by adopting legislation that makes license holding, and therefore access to legal driving, more tenuous—particularly for low-wage employees. In this report, we highlight promising initiatives and provide recommendations for policymakers to reduce the impact of economic license suspensions that are unrelated to driving competency and public safety. (author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Sanchez, Thomas W. ; Shen, Qing; Peng, Zhong-Ren
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2004

    While policy-makers assert that increased public transit mobility can positively affect employment status for low-income persons, there is little empirical evidence to support this theory. It is generally assumed that public transit can effectively link unemployed, car-less, persons with appropriate job locations—hence the call for more public transit services to assist moving welfare recipients to gainful employment. Thus far, the available evidence is anecdotal, while general patterns of transit access in relationship to labour participation remain relatively unexplored. This analysis examines whether increased transit access is associated with the case status (employment status) of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) recipients in the Atlanta, Georgia; Baltimore, Maryland; Dallas, Texas; Denver, Colorado; Milwaukee, Wisconsin ; and Portland, Oregon metropolitan areas. Individual TANF recipient location data, transit route/stop data and employment location data were used in limited dependent variable regression analyses to predict the employment status of TANF...

    While policy-makers assert that increased public transit mobility can positively affect employment status for low-income persons, there is little empirical evidence to support this theory. It is generally assumed that public transit can effectively link unemployed, car-less, persons with appropriate job locations—hence the call for more public transit services to assist moving welfare recipients to gainful employment. Thus far, the available evidence is anecdotal, while general patterns of transit access in relationship to labour participation remain relatively unexplored. This analysis examines whether increased transit access is associated with the case status (employment status) of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) recipients in the Atlanta, Georgia; Baltimore, Maryland; Dallas, Texas; Denver, Colorado; Milwaukee, Wisconsin ; and Portland, Oregon metropolitan areas. Individual TANF recipient location data, transit route/stop data and employment location data were used in limited dependent variable regression analyses to predict the employment status of TANF recipients. The results of this analysis indicate that access to fixed-route transit and employment concentrations had virtually no association with the employment outcomes of TANF recipients in the six selected metropolitan areas. (author abstract)

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