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High-growth areas need transit to reach economic potential, APTA says

Businesses located in the nation's high-growth regions need additional public transportation services to reach full employment potential, according to a new study commissioned by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA).

The study found that up to 480,000 new jobs, representing about $32 billion in annual income, will be "at risk" due to traffic congestion by 2040, APTA officials said in a press release.

Titled, "The Role of Transit in Support of High Growth Business Clusters in the U.S.," the report was released yesterday at a briefing sponsored by the Congressional Public Transportation Caucus. The study was conducted by the Economic Development Research Corp.

The study examined key U.S. high-growth and high-tech business clusters, and analyzed the impact transportation access constraints have on eight areas: Medline in Atlanta; Kendall Square in Boston; Route 128 Technology Cluster in Burlington, Mass.; Mid-Town and South of Market in San Francisco; Silicon Valley in California; Deerfield, Ill.; Technology Center in Denver; and South Lake Union in Seattle.

Economic Development Research President Glen Weisbrod, who wrote the report, noted that the U.S. economy is driven by technology-oriented and high-growth business sectors that rely on clustering in urban locations, where businesses can best access research and development centers, information sharing and a large, skilled workforce.

"Public transportation provides the access to enable high-tech and high-growth industries to cluster in areas that can attract the talent they need, while avoiding the consequences of constrained growth," said APTA President and Chief Executive Officer Michael Melaniphy. "Public transportation investment is a key ingredient in helping these firms enhance their productivity and compete on a global stage."

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More News from 12/6/2013