The purpose of this research is to examine accessibility to job opportunities among residents of City Heights. Our research is motivated by several decades of research on the relationship between transportation access to employment and labor market outcomes. The seminal idea in this literature is the spatial mismatch hypothesis, first conceptualized by urban economist John Kain. In the 1960s, Kain hypothesized that residential segregation isolated African Americans in inner city ghettos, distant from growing concentrations of suburban employment and that the resulting “spatial mismatch” could help explain higher rates of African American unemployment compared to whites who were able to move near suburban jobs (Kain, 1968). As intuitive as this idea may be, whether spatial mismatch explains labor market outcomes remains unresolved almost a half-century later.
Transportation and Access to Employment in City Heights