Fiscal Impact Analysis and the Costs of Alternative Development Patterns

Lorelei Juntunen, Gerrit‐Jan Knaap and Terry Moore

in The Oxford Handbook of Urban Economics and Planning

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9780195380620
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

 Fiscal Impact Analysis and the Costs of Alternative Development Patterns

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  • Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics


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The growing recognition of the relationship between decisions about growth (how and where it occurs) and public sector budgets has contributed to the attention given in academia and in practice to fiscal impact analysis. This article explores the theory and practice of fiscal impact analysis with a focus on the relationship between government budgets and urban development patterns. Conventional wisdom states that higher-density development, or compact growth, produces more favorable fiscal impacts than low-density suburban sprawl. Furthermore, the article presents a framework for understanding fiscal impact analysis. It also presents a discussion of the methods of fiscal impact analysis and a discussion of the relationship between development patterns and fiscal impacts. Finally, it highlights some thoughts on the use of fiscal impact analysis for making development decisions.

Keywords: fiscal impact analysis; growth; government budgets; urban development patterns; developmental decisions

Article.  10718 words. 

Subjects: Economics ; Urban, Rural, and Regional Economics

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