Transit-served neighborhoods diverging in value

Transit-served neighborhoods are rising in value -- sometimes skyrocketing —- when they have good urbanism and are perceived as safe, according to an article in the April-May issue of Better! Cities & Towns. But many are losing value and depopulating — even in neighborhoods with well-connected streets that would be highly walkable given more and better destinations. A study by the American Public Transit Association and the National Association of Realtors showed that more than 60 percent of Chicago's 388 "transit sheds" underperformed the region as a whole, for example. The Minneapolis-St. Paul, Phoenix, Boston, and San Francisco regions were also studied. Languishing transit-served neighborhoods could be made more appealing through placemaking, street trees, and more destinations —- like grocery stores. If Arthur C. Nelson is right in his 2013 book Reshaping Metropolitan America, then transit sheds, particularly those in the central city and inner-ring suburbs, should gain value through 2030. That means that the transit sheds that lost value from 2006-2011 — and where real estate is a bargain today — could be investment opportunities in the years to come.

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