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Atlanta : A Mega Logistics Center in the Piedmont Atlantic Megaregion (PAM)

Abstract : This paper looks at spatial patterns of freight and logistics activities and the planning and policy issues associated with them. Two important characteristics of the geography of the logistics industry are analyzed: (1) "Logistics sprawl", i.e. the spatial deconcentration of logistics facilities and distribution centers in metropolitan areas, and (2) the polarization of logistics activities, i.e. the concentration of logistics activities in very large metropolitan areas. The paper focuses on Atlanta, one of the largest metropolitan areas in the United States (U.S.). Like other very large cities in the U.S., in recent years logistics activities have increased considerably in Atlanta. The paper also examines the Piedmont Atlantic Megaregion (PAM), which has a total population of 15 million and includes Birmingham, Atlanta, Raleigh-Durham and Charlotte. PAM contains many distribution centers with a national and international market area, and is one of the country’s fastest growing locations for logistics hubs. The megaregion concept is particularly well-suited to the analysis of freight transport systems, because freight transport’s market areas, driven by global supply chains, are largely disconnected from a single city and spatially organized on a regional and multicity basis. Another focus of the paper is the question of planning for a more efficient locational pattern of freight facilities across metropolitan areas and within megaregions. Local governments compete for jobs and activities that generate tax revenues, and logistics has become a significant activity for many U.S. metropolitan areas. The megaregion concept can contribute to a more collaborative regional planning approach.
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Laetitia Dablanc, Catherine Ross. Atlanta : A Mega Logistics Center in the Piedmont Atlantic Megaregion (PAM). Journal of Transport Geography, Elsevier, 2012, 24, pp 432-442. ⟨10.1016/j.jtrangeo.2012.05.001⟩. ⟨hal-00877532⟩

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