The Wharton School

Contexte

Cities around the globe are either in the transition stage of repositioning their long-term competitiveness or in the development stage of large-scale metropolitan planning. Within the governmental leadership, decisions have been found in these two settings: the outstanding commitments on the modernization of efficient infrastructure systems and the transformative mindset to recapitalize city’s assets: both developable and underutilized lands.

This project presents a surgical diagnosis of policy governance and investment decision-making in the scope of multimodal transport system and examines the economic growth driven by the process of policy formation and managerial strategy toward city and regional growth. The goal of the project is to distill insightful grappling from a meaningful number of case studies and best practices that are tailored to the practicality and solution to the rampant urbanization of African cities and the congestion of French cities and then, go through the learning curve quickly to capture early results and mobilize capitals.

First, prior to the fund allocation, the prerequisite is to decide what kind of city do people want? Cities built around cars, as an example, would look and operate drastically different from cities built around transit. The examination of the interrelation between cars and transit and the corresponding measures to progress toward a livable city is well-thought out.

Second, dissecting the severity and sophistication of international cities, we contemplate the cases simultaneously facing a rampant spillover and suffering a significant economic growth leakage. The quintessential case, as one of the examples, the New York City (so called: the Big Apple), is encountering a high degree of complexity among its peer cities due to its multi-tier administrative framework represents the necessities to turn solo project centric evaluation into a systematic measurement to shape better consolidated success.

Third, rail lines and stations influence the city’s form and functionality due to their permanence and considerable investment. Opinions differ about the geometric shape and operating strategies for transit network influence future patterns of city development and regional integration. Through the engineering and architectural uplifts to the hundred-year-old underperforming Pennsylvania Station, as an example, in the center of downtown Manhattan, the conversion of an independent dead-end terminal to integrated through-running station would unlock the economic values by recapitalizing underutilized land alongside the distributable network-effect of multi-satellite cities and creation of regional unified network (RUN) to further increase service coverage, regional connectivity, and economic productivity within the bigger apple region.

It is time to pay systematic attention to the transformative process of repositioning cities’ long-term competitiveness learning from a meaningful number of case studies and best practices.

Objectifs

The goal of the project is to distill insightful grappling from a meaningful number of case studies and best practices that are tailored to the practicality and solution of the rampant urbanization of African cities and the congestion of French cities and then, go through the learning curve quickly to capture early results and mobilize capitals.

[Obj/Chg 1 – Clarify the essential challenges in urban mobility: Collision of cities and cars and vicious circle]

Cities around the globe are undergoing a series of transitions. One of the essential challenges in urban infrastructure investment is the collision of cities and cars and the “vicious circle” it creates. Cities around the globe faced a dramatic increase in private car usage during the transitional period, causing ESCRIPTIF DU PROJET :significant economic growth leakage, even stagnation due to congestion. On the other hand, cities, dedicated to managing the collision between cars and cities, alleviating the friction, and creating an intermodal balanced transportation system, were able to generate long-term sustainable growth alongside livability. The practitioner-centric investigation showcases a series of international case studies pinpointed critical conflicts, trade-offs, equilibrium, and corresponding measures between the two distinct urban assets.

[Obj/Chg 2 – Avoid making mutually conflicting policy and investment decisions]

The hazards of facing an uncoordinated investment mandate jeopardize a city’s growth and a nation’s competitiveness and put an invisible ceiling on the growth trajectory. Along the path, an inevitable phenomenon would occur: a tremendous amount of capital has spent in infrastructure, but the city is still facing numerous externalities and economic leakage. Even worse, a country is still unable to increase its aggregate growth (economic, social, and environmental) and livability. These occurred in both transitioning and developed countries. Without systematically examining the complex interrelation between fund distribution within government agencies, it requires more capital to “correct” the situation in the following rounds of investment, which foreseeably compromised the return. The data represents the consequence of jeopardized return and incidental waste of government capital.

[Obj/Chg 3 – Put process and investment procedure in charge]

Governments invest in infrastructure, the incumbent needs to first understand the importance of investing in value-creating projects, identify the goal of the investment, assess the anticipated outcome, plan the investment procedure, allocate capital and resource, form supporting policies to encourage greater usage of the infrastructure, balance the modes of travel, mitigate the externalities, determine how to operate and maintain the infrastructure, generate a stream of revenue for the fund, and most importantly keep investing in value-creating projects onwards. This whole process must efficiently streamline. However, in the realm of infrastructure decisions, a common question is how much capital do we need to invest to keep economic growth? The question needs to be reframed in this way: how much can we grow without destroying value? The initial question focuses on scale. The reframed question draws attention to quality and method. A confusion of mixing goals and means leads to either overspending the capital or spending it without clearly defined goals or intended outcomes. The differentiation draws attention on if investments are « system for getting work done », processes provide a fine-grained description of the means.