I don’t see the absurdity. Queensmarket is doing just fine in comparison while being a hub, and that is during a time of decline of playerbase. Once they fix other issues things will look very differently. In particular, once they remove the fast travel and spread out resources distribution so that each AlbionMall has different access to resources things will start to look much better. I think they are about to test that theory given that their state of the game update lists it as something to do.
Time will tell, of course, but I’m confident that there will be people (perhaps not you), that would be happy to set up trade routes and use their oxes to take advantage of the market differences. I know I’ve met a handful such people, and I’m also one of them myself.
People will transport the stuff arround to earn AO Silver. Because there are lazy people who just will buy it, even if the price is allot higher. Best example how this works is EvE.
Thats why SI have to remove all of the fast travel out of the game and bring the game back to Sandbox.