This paper presents an intra-metropolitan approach to analyse the impact of urban spatial structure on local economic growth. Focusing on the Barcelona metropolitan region (BMR) between 1986 and 2001, we estimate a municipal employment growth model in which dynamic agglomeration economies related to urban spatial structure are considered using distance to employment centres, to assess metropolitan effects, and distance-weighted variables, to measure neighbourhood effects. The results obtained show the existence of neighbourhood specialization economies and metropolitan urbanization-localization economies fostering local growth. All of this leads to the paper's main conclusion: urban spatial structure is important for economic growth in an intra-metropolitan context. © 2011 The Author(s). Papers in Regional Science © 2011 RSAI.
- Agglomeration economies
- Employment growth
- Intra-metropolitan localization
- Urban spatial structure