If you had to plan the urban transport system from scratch today, would it look the way it does now? This is a question that mayors, opinion leaders and entrepreneurs insist on not asking. Everyone plays the same familiar game of transportation and ‘moves the cheese’ only slightly each time. Urban transportation planning is fixated about modes and nodes. In fact … if there is anything more conservative than city transportation planning it is the design of the cars that travel in it.
If you’ve been following my posts and the theoretical model I’ve presented, you too have come to the rather disturbing conclusion – That this model fits any free market. Whether it is a city, a manufacturing plant, or a service company, it seems that every free market seeks to achieve agglomeration, a state where there is only one supplier and zero competition.
What determines a city’s size and the area of its economic impact? What is the connection between ‘Hassle-distance’ and the theoretical gravity model I’ve demonstrated earlier? I want to elaborate more on the Suppression Zone of the city and I’ll tie it all together here.
Have you ever thought about the game plan of the big transportation companies conquering the world? Ride hailing companies like Uber or Lyft, bike and e-scooter sharing companies like Bird or Lime and more. All these have a unique Game Economics that determine their strategy. So let’s understand some of the rules that govern these companies. As usual, this is a very technical post, written for those that really need to understand the game.
“The city is an economic engine”. This built-in assumption is now rooted in so many studies that it had become taken for granted. To the point where no one pauses to ask whether or not it’s true anymore. If you are as fascinated with cities as I am, it is clear to you that this claim is pivotal, so why are its supporting arguments so vague and easy to refute?
Quite a few studies demonstrate that large cities are associated with high levels of productivity. This statistical correlation is the basis for the assumption that the city is an economic engine. This is the claim that I intend to dismantle. I am not arguing with the facts, only with the conclusions made by the various researchers.