First Advisor

Kenneth J. Dueker

Date of Publication


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Urban Studies


Urban Studies and Planning




Land use -- Planning -- Oregon, Regional planning -- Oregon, Urbanization -- Oregon



Physical Description

2, v, 137 leaves: ill. 28 cm.


Urban containment programs may be evaluated in terms of a theory unifying contributions from the economic, geographic and political science disciplines. The unified theory shows that successful programs will segment the urban-rural land market, remove speculative use value of rural land, and result in the urban land market valuing greenbelt proximity as an amenity. A general model to test urban containment programs against the unified theory is developed and then modified for application to Salem, Oregon. Results are fourfold. First, a gap in the locus of urban and rural land values at the UGB indicates that segmentation of the urban-rural land market is associated with urban containment policies. Second, the simultaneous effect of imposing a UGB proximate to urban development and subjecting rural land to conservancy zoning is to remove the speculative value component of rural land and reveal Sinclair's (1967) underlying convex quadratic agricultural use land value gradient. This finding is important in two respects: (a) it confirms the possibility of Sinclair's gradient, which has not been supported empirically hitherto, and (b) it suggests that a program's success in preserving greenbelt land solely for agricultural uses can be evidenced if Sinclair's gradient is revealed. Third, the conditions under which a program may fail to preserve rural land from speculative behavior will be evidenced by the traditional negatively sloping land value gradient. Fourth, where urban development is proximate to a UGB delineating greenbelts, the urban land market will value its proximity as an amenity. This finding is important in two respects: (a) it suggests that proximity to privately owned greenbelts may be valued as an amenity in the urban land market, a finding which has not been reported empirically hitherto, and (b) if an urban land market has confidence in the ability of an urban containment program to prevent sprawl into greenbelts, then it will treat greenbelt proximity as an amenity. The unified theory and methodology developed by this dissertation are generalizable to the evaluation of other urban containment programs.


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Portland State University. School of Urban Affairs.

Persistent Identifier