This paper investigates the interaction between commuting and migration within a local labor market, focusing especially on the question of whether commuting can lead to migration over time. Using Virginia data from 2000 to 2006, the study shows that the commuting flow between two locations has a positive and significant effect on the migration flow in the same direction in subsequent years. The underlying reasons are that increased commuting costs or reduced migration costs can induce commuters to become migrants. These results may have useful implications for urban communities in their revitalization efforts, as cities can explore ways of attracting daily commuters to their cities to become permanent residents, reversing the trends of declining urban population.

Document Type


Publication Date


Publisher Statement

Copyright © 2012 Mid-Continent Regional Science Association. This article first appeared in The Journal of Regional Analysis & Policy 42, no. 3 (2012): 237-50.

Please note that downloads of the article are for private/personal use only.