Metropolitan Areas: Regional Differences

September 1, 1998

The New argument in the urban research literature of the 1990s is that the economic health of cities and suburbs is closely linked, with the prosperity of suburban communities, in particular, depending on that of the central city. Suburbs that ignore the decline of their central cities cannot, despite their strong belief to the contrary, go it alone. The well-being of entire metropolitan areas hinges on intra-metropolitan cooperation—and on public policies that encourage city-suburb cooperation in infrastructure planning and financing, tax-base sharing, school finance reform, school district consolidation, and land use planning.