Table of Contents

Amenities and Rural Development

Amenities and Rural Development

Theory, Methods and Public Policy

New Horizons in Environmental Economics series

Edited by Gary Paul Green, Steven C. Deller and David D. Marcouiller

Amenities and Rural Development explores the paradigmatic shift in how we view land resources and the potential for development in amenity-rich rural regions. Amenity-based growth can lead to several paths, based largely on proximity to urban areas and the type of development that occurs, whether it be seasonal residents, retirees, or tourism. The distributional implications of amenity-led development are an important consideration for policy, both within and between communities and regions. The contributors conclude that public policy needs to focus on maximizing complementary and supplementary uses while minimizing antagonistic uses of amenities.

Chapter 10: Impact of Outdoor Recreation Facilities on Remote Rural Income Growth

J.C. Dissart and David W. Marcouiller

Subjects: environment, environmental sociology, urban and regional studies, regional studies

Extract

J.C. Dissart and David W. Marcouiller INTRODUCTION Despite the population turnaround of the 1970s, considerable public policy effort, and generally increasing demands for rural land, US rural areas still lag behind urban ones with respect to many socioeconomic indicators, including housing, transportation, educational attainment, health care and income. This statement, however, is not generally applicable to all rural areas. Rural America actually offers a diverse, contrasted picture of regions both in economic decline and in generally improving economic conditions (Castle 1995; Drabenstott and Smith 1995; Lapping et al. 1989). The latter are typified as either located near major metropolitan areas, benefiting from agglomeration economies and economic spillover, or offering outstanding natural, cultural or social amenities that attract people and firms. During the past 50 years, the rural economy has transitioned away from traditional natural resource extraction activities and its related processing to services (both personal and professional) and retail sectors. With rising per capita incomes, transportation improvements and environmental awareness, rural land is increasingly seen as a reservoir of natural resources for amenity use such as recreation and tourism, rather than for extractive use such as forestry, mining, agriculture or fisheries. Recreation and tourism is currently a popular rural development strategy because of the apparent ease of tourism in creating jobs and income, its low requirement in labor training and infrastructure investments, and its seemingly nonconsumptive nature (Frederick 1993). The chief interest of rural tourism and recreation for rural areas, though, is that it capitalizes...

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