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August 26, 2002 -- News Brief

In a new study, Jan K. Brueckner, IBE Distinguished Professor of Economics, estimates that the expansion of Chicago's O'Hare airport would create 185,000 new service-related jobs in the Chicago metropolitan area. This estimate is based on the assumption, which Brueckner calls "conservative," that the planned 100 percent increase in O'Hare's capacity would raise traffic at the airport by 50 percent. The job gains would occur in retail and wholesale trade, finance, insurance and real estate, basic services, government, transportation, and public utilities. Brueckner's study is one of only a few studies that looks at the relationships between airline passenger traffic and employment. He analyzed data from more than 90 US cities.

Brueckner is also a faculty member in the University of Illinois Institute of Government and Public Affairs. The full report, entitled "Airline Traffic and Urban Economic Development," is online in PDF format on the IGPA website.

Brueckner's report was cited in the metro edition of the Chicago Tribune on August 16, 2002 as well as in the downstate edition on that same day.


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