2013 Preserving the American Dream Conference

Welcome to the 2013 Preserving the American Dream conference. This file accesses dozens of recent papers and articles by more than twenty of the conference speakers. It also accesses other recent research papers on housing and land use, transit, and driving issues. Finally, the file accesses recent census, transit, housing, and energy-related data. Some of the files are very large but most are less than 5 megabytes.


John Charles is the director of Oregon's Cascade Policy Institute and has studied Portland's transit and transit-oriented developments for nearly two decades. His transit-oriented development PowerPoint show reveals that people who live in Portland transit-oriented developments drive just about as much as people who live elsewhere in the Portland area. Warning: This file is more than 100 megabytes. If you do not have a fast connection, download this lower-resolution version that is only 24 megabytes.

Tiffany Couch is a forensic accountant who has scrutinized the Columbia River Crossing, a proposal to replace the existing Interstate 5 bridge between Portland and Vancouver, Washington.
White paper revealing that planners spent a huge amount of money accomplishing almost nothing.
White paper showing that planners violated state open meetings laws.
PowerPoint show summarizing these findings.
News article showing planners spent well over $100 million designing a bridge that was too short to accommodate river traffic.

Wendell Cox is the principal with Demographia and a frequent contributor to NewGeography.com.
Toward More Prosperous Cities
Aspirational Cities (co-authored with Joel Kotkin)
Zero-Sum Game: The Austin Streetcar and Development
Florida Sheds Its "Smart-Growth" Dunce Cap
Natural and Regulatory Constraints on Housing Supply
Phoenix Land Market Analysis
World Urban Areas
International Housing Affordability Survey
Review of Plan Bay Area
Urban Policy: Time for a Paradigm Shift
Washington's War on Cars and the Suburbs

Baruch Feigenbaum is a transportation policy analyst with the Reason Foundation.
Practical Strategies for Increasing Mobility in Atlanta
High-Speed Rail in Europe and Asia: Lessons for the United States
New Round of TIGER Grants, Same Old Political Purpose

John Glennon is a former researcher with the Cascade Policy Institute and currently works with the minority staff on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.
Eliminating Choice
An Outsider's Perspective on Portland
The Disappearance of Large Lots: 2013 Conference PowerPoint show

Rick Harrison has pioneered neighborhood design methods and technologies that have been market proven in over 800 developments in 46 States and 18 Countries.
Prius Efficiency on Hummer Streets (2013 conference PowerPoint show; 72 megabytes)
Sustainable Suburban Growth (2013 conference PowerPoint show; 67 megabytes)
Green Building
Coved and Bay Home Neighborhoods
Introducing the Prefurbia Solution to Urban Renewal
Green Building Experiences
Urban Renewal in Detroit
Twenty-First Century Solutions for Better Neighborhoods

Katherine Kersten is a lawyer, a writer, and a senior fellow and chair of the Center of the American Experiment in Minneapolis.
Beware of the Metropolitan Council

Stanley Kurtz is a Senior Fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center in Washington, DC, and the author of Spreading the Wealth: How Obama is Robbing the Suburbs to Pay for the Cities.
Regionalism: Obama's Anti-Suburb Revolution
Robbing the Suburbs to Pay for the Cities

Bruce Lambert is executive director of the Institute for Trade and Transportation Studies in New Orleans, which focuses on commercial traffic.
Can We Plan Together?
Will Transportation Shape the Region's Economy?
MAP-21 Freight Provisions
Regional Prioritization of Freight Networks
Does Freight Matter?
Freight and Infrastructure

Dale Moser is CEO of CoachUSA, whose MegaBus subsidiary revolutionized intercity bus travel in the United States.
The MegaBus Revolution (2013 Conference PowerPoint show)

Ken Orski is editor and publisher of Innovation NewsBriefs, an influential and widely read transportation newsletter, now in its 24th year of publication.
Where Do We Go From Here
Searching for New Approaches
Infrastructure Advocacy
A Reasoned Approach Wanted
A Lasting Solution
The Role of President
Eight Questions for Transportation Secretary Foxx
Can-Do States
The Obvious Solution to Transportation Funding
Tolling Interstates
How to Avert a Transportation Funding Crisis

Randal O'Toole is a senior fellow with the Cato Institute and author of American Nightmare: How Government Undermines the Dream of Homeownership and four other books on the failures of government planning.
How Urban Planners Caused the Housing Bubble
Why Comp
The Case Against Rail Transit
The Case for Privatizing Transit
The Case Against Tax-Increment Financing
Intercity Buses: The Forgotten Mode
Ending Congestion by Refinancing Highways
The Streetcar Hoax
The Case for Privatizing Amtrak
Why Congress Should Abolish New Starts
How Sustainability Planning Threatens the American Dream
Review of Plan Bay Area

Alan Pisarski is a writer, analyst and consultant in the fields of transportation research, policy, travel behavior, statistics and investment and the author of Commuting in America, now entering its fourth edition.
2013 Conference PowerPoint show
Commuting in America IV: Overview
Commuting in America IV: The Role of Commuting in Overall Travel
Commuting in America IV: Population and Worker Trends
Commuting in America IV: Population and Worker Dynamics
Commuting in America IV: Vehicle and Transit Availability
Have the Younger Population Lost Interest in Cars (PowerPoint show given at a Cato Hill briefing)

Robert Poole co-founded the Reason Foundation in 1978 and served as its CEO until 2000. Since then, he has directed Reason's transportation policy project.
2013 Conference PowerPoint show
Privatizing Air Traffic Control
Surface Transportation Innovations #120 (latest issue of Robert Poole's newsletter)
A New Era for U.S. Toll Concessions

Panos Prevedouros is a Professor of Civil Engineering at the University of Hawaii at Manoa and Subcommittee Chair of the Transportation Research Board (TRB), a unit of the National Academies.
10 Reasons Why I Do Not Support Honolulu Rail Transit
Let Them Eat Cake

Tom Rubin, CPA, CMA, CMC, CIA, CGFM, CFM has more than thirty-five years of public transit experience as a senior executive in major transit agencies and as an auditor, consultant, and author.
2013 Conference PowerPoint show
Plan Bay Area debate PowerPoint show
Review of Plan Bay Area

Marc Scribner focuses on public policy issues related to the built environment, as well as regional and urban economic policy, for the Competitive Enterprise Institute.
Misguided Economic Regulation of U.S. Railroads

Cliff Slater chairs HonoluluTraffic, the principal organization opposing a proposed $5 billion rail transit line in Honolulu. He was a scholar-in-residence in the Univeristy of Hawaii Economics Department in 1997.
The Case Against Honolulu Rail Transit

Sam Staley is managing director of the DeVoe L. Moore Center at Florida State University, a senior research fellow at Reason Foundation, and the author or co-author of five books on urban policy issues.
Ballot-Box Zoning
Florida Housing Affordability
Market-Oriented Planning
The Vanishing Farmland Myth

Ron Utt adjunct scholar at the Maryland Public Policy Institute, and the author of a recently published book on the War of 1812. Previously he was the Herbert and Joyce Morgan Senior Research Fellow at The Heritage Foundation where he conducted research on housing, transportation, privatization, urban revitalization, land use, and growth management.
Yellow Light for Public-Private Partnerships in Virginia? (2013 conference presentation in PDF format)
Congress Should Link Amtrak's Generous Subsidy to Improved Performance
Ending Pervasive Inequities in Gas Tax Burdens
How States Can Improve Their Transportation Systems and Relieve Traffic Congestion
A Costly Exercise in Social Engineering
Can Public–Private Partnerships Fill the Transportation Funding Gap? (co-authored with William Reinhardt)
Infrastructure Bank Proposals Rely on Backdoor Deficit Spending
Federal Highway Program Shortchanges Half of the States
Privatizing Rest Stops Allows States to Serve Motorists and Increase Revenues
Federal Highway Trust Fund: Recommit to Better Highways and Enhanced Mobility
Infrastructure Stimulus Spending: Pandering to Organized Labor

Pat Zilliacus is a transportation engineer with over 20 years of experience with a regional planning organization in the eastern United States.
Crowd Sourcing Highway & Street Speeds (2013 presentation, PDF version)
Crowd Sourcing Highway & Street Speeds (2013 presentation, PowerPoint version)

Other Research

Autos & Highways

Has Growth in Automobile Use Ended? by Don Pickrell (PDF version)
Has Growth in Automobile Use Ended? by Don Pickrell (PowerPoint version)
What's Youth Got to Do With It? study by UCLA researchers on the driving habits of the Millennial generation

Housing & Land Use

Washington DC's Assault on Local Zoning
Global Housing Bubbles
Residential Land Use Regulation and the US Housing Price Cycle Between 2000 and 2009
Housing Bubbles and Busts: The Role of Supply Elasticity
Distortions Resulting from Residential Land Use Controls in Metropolitan Areas
How Texas Avoided Housing Bubble


Light-Rail Transit in American by researchers at the St. Louis Federal Reserve



The following census tables from 2000, 2010, 2011, and 2012 include:

These data may be for:

Because large portions of MSAs may be rural, they are not good for calculation population densities; instead, UZAs should be used for densities.


UZAs in 2010
UZAs in 2011
UZA Population & Density in 2010

Journey to Work

UZAs in 2000 (also has UZA densities)
UZAs in 2010
UZAs in 2010 by number of vehicles owned per household
UZAs in 2011
MSAs in2011

Homeownership Rates

MSAs in 2010

Housing Affordability (Value-to-Income Ratios)

Places (3-year average 2009-2011)
States in 2011
UZAs in 2010
UZAs in 2011
UZAs in 2012


These energy data books were published by the U.S. Department of Energy and show that single-family homes are more energy-efficient per square foot than multi-family and that transit is no more energy efficient than autos. Building Energy Data
Building Energy Data Spreadsheet
Transportation Energy Data
Transportation Energy Data Spreadsheets (link downloads a 5-megabyte ZIP file containing 276 spreadsheets from the above report)


These price indices show the volatility of home prices by state and metropolitan area going back to 1975. They were published by the Federal Housing Finance Agency. In the state spreadsheet, enter the two-letter initials for up to six states in cells BL2 through BQ2 to see charts showing the price indices in those states. For the metropolitan area spreadsheet, look in column J for the numbers of up to six metropolitan areas and enter those numbers in cells AA1 to AF1 to see charts showing the price indices in those areas. Home Price Indices by State
Home Price Indices by Metropolitan Area

Each year, Coldwell Banker publishes its estimates of the median price for a four-bedroom, 2-1/2-bath home in each of scores of cities in the United States and Canada. Here are the data from the last four years. Coldwll Banker 2009 Home Price Data
Coldwll Banker 2010 Home Price Data
Coldwll Banker 2011 Home Price Data
Coldwll Banker 2012 Home Price Data


The Federal Transit Administration publishes transit data each year, but those data are hard to use. These spreadsheets combine the data in a simplified format. The historic data spreadsheet has a different worksheet for each of several variables including operating costs, capital costs, trips, and passenger miles. The annual spreadsheets include data for every transit agency and mode at the top, modal averages in the middle, and data for urbanized areas at the bottom. Historic Transit Data, 1991-2010
2010 National Transit Database
2011 National Transit Database