Transportation Planning to Support Economic Development in Minnesota

Principal Investigator:

Lee Munnich, Senior Fellow, SLPP, Humphrey School of Public Affairs


  • Michael Iacono, Research Fellow, Civil, Environmental and Geo-Engineering

Project Summary:

Traditional policies oriented toward the use of transportation infrastructure to promote economic development have focused on infrastructure as a magnet for firm location, often with little regard for the characteristic of specific industries. This project seeks to advance the state of knowledge of the relationship between transportation and economic development by investigating how firms in specific industry clusters use transportation networks and what role those networks play in the formation and growth of industry clusters. This approach combines quantitative and qualitative techniques to geographically identify competitive industry clusters in Minnesota's metropolitan and micropolitan regions, and to further investigate the role of transportation in these industry clusters through in-depth interviews, focus groups, and site visits with representatives of firms in specific industry clusters. These methods are expected to yield valuable insights into how transportation functions as an input within industry clusters and how it can inform economic development strategies tailored to certain locations and industries.


Project Details:

  • Start date: 04/2013
  • Project Status: Completed
  • Research Area: Planning and Economy
  • Topics: Economics, Planning