Making the Transit-Land Value Connection

When the link between transit operators and real estate developers was severed in the early 20th century, transit became both unprofitable and unresponsive to market demand, and land value-lowering MTA cuts are just one example, says Stephen Smith.

Smith responds to a recent New York Times article about how transit cuts in New York have affected the value of apartments and homes along the route:

"(O)f course, since the MTA doesn't see a penny of the value it creates, it isn't surprising that "the impact on property values isn't something the agency takes into account."

One way for transit agencies to benefit from the value they create is the use of "tax-increment financing" or "special-assessment districts" that levy taxes on infrastructure improvements specifically on those who benefit, but these mechanisms are pale imitations of the only way to truly link transit-induced value and real estate: allowing joint ownership."

Thanks to Stephen Smith

Full Story: Internalizing positive transit externalities

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