The Distribution of Transportation Costs in the Twin Cities Region


David Anderson, Gerard McCullough

February 2003

Report no. CTS 03-03


Economics, Planning

The purpose of this report is to determine who bears the costs of transportation in the Twin Cities Region for 1998 and 2020. In a previous report, The Full Cost of Transportation in the Twin Cities Region, we determined the total social costs of transportation in the region. In this study we determine who bears the governmental, internal and external costs of transportation (i.e., who pays for or experiences these costs). We also determine who imposes or causes the marginal external costs of transportation. Most of the costs are caused and borne by residents of the region, but some are caused or borne by people who live outside the region. We analyze cost incidence for 78 sub-regions and for nine income/vehicle ownership groups. This report contains three appendices. The first appendix describes other studies of cost incidence. The second appendix defines the regions that we examine. The third appendix examines the efficiency and equity of a hypothetical improvement in express bus service. The purpose of the third appendix is to demonstrate ways that information on transportation costs can be used to help evaluate policy alternatives. It is not intended to reflect on the desirability of any actual projects.

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