April 1, 2009
Transportation and Land Value
OK, slightly geeky, but still interesting...
Topic: Transport, Land Use, and Value
Abstract: This presentation considers co-evolutionary process between the development of land and transport networks. Using data from the rail and Underground in London and the streetcar system in the Twin Cities, the empirical relationship is established statistically under several different contexts, and hypotheses about the positive feedback nature of the interaction are tested. Using insights from empirical observation, a numerical simulation is constructed to more formally test the relationship, and to understand the extent to which allowing networks to vary in response to land use (and land use to vary in response to network) affects the spatial organization of each. Models of network growth which fix land use, and models of land use which fix network growth, underestimate the degree of hierarchy that emerges in the system. Given transportation creates land value, and recognizing the problem of underfunding transport infrastructure, new funding sources can be used to increase transport investment, create additional land value, and improve social welfare.
Portland State University
Center for Transportation Studies
Spring 2009 Transportation Seminar Series
Speaker: David Levinson
Associate Professor in the Department of Civil Engineering at the
University of Minnesota and Director of the Networks, Economics,
and Urban Systems (NEXUS) research group
When: Friday, April 3, 2009, 12:00 - 1:00pm
Where: PSU Urban Center Building, SW 6th and Mill, Room 204
April 2, 2009 1:49 AM
Frank Dufay Says:
Given transportation creates land value, and recognizing the problem of underfunding transport infrastructure, new funding sources can be used to increase transport investment, create additional land value, and improve social welfare.
The fundamental principle --and state law-- behind Local Improvement Districts is that the anticipated increased value from an improvement can be assessed to the benefitting property owners. That has often been used for transportation projects.
Not a bad concept.
Where it falls down --and people resist-- is when the process is perverted by political considerations, i.e. owner-occupied condos in the Pearl are excluded from assessments for the Streetcar however much they may benefit from it. Existing property owners then shoulder an unfair --and arguably illegal-- share of the cost, since they're now paying MORE than they benefit. Just as the rest of TriMet's ridership is helping subsidize "development oriented transit" for gold-plated projects that aren't about moving people efficiently, but about increasing land values for the development community.
April 2, 2009 5:06 AM
jim karlock Says:
Most development around rail lines is because of tax abatements & government subsidies.
SavePortland has information on these.
A number of Portland planners and city council members testified at council that development has not occurred along the Eastside rail line and tax subsidies were needed. See portlandfacts.com/Transit/LightRailDevelopment.htm
April 2, 2009 7:32 AM
Peter Bajurny Says:
Curses. I'm at the University of Minnesota and we don't get cool seminars like this (although there is one on fare collection systems coming up, so maybe it all evens out)
April 2, 2009 7:49 AM
Chris Smith Says:
i.e. owner-occupied condos in the Pearl are excluded from assessments for the Streetcar
In the relatively small LID being contemplated for the 'Northrup Loop' element in the Pearl District that is part of the Streetcar Loop, owner-occupied units WILL be included. I think the past policy of excluding owner-occupied condos is pretty much dead.
April 2, 2009 11:07 AM
vancouver resident Says:
Wow, I didn't know that the Pearl District condos were exempt from paying for the streetcar. I was just in the Pearl yesterday and I was impressed with the buildings there (I grew up in NE Portland and remember when that area was a pretty bad part of town). That's crazy that they didn't have to pay for a public asset that greatly impacts the value of their property. I mean, I'm for school spending have voted for every tax increase/sustain measure for schools because one reason is that the quality of the school system boosts my property value. But to get the benefit of a public asset without having to pay for it is pretty lame.
I guess that Chris said that that type of abatement is now history, which is a good thing in my opinion. If I lived in Portland I would have been pretty p'od about that situation.
April 2, 2009 12:08 PM
Chris Smith Says:
Wow, I didn't know that the Pearl District condos were exempt from paying for the streetcar.
Keep in mind that when the original alignment was built, most of those condos were still on the drawing board! The owners of the undeveloped property DID get assessed for the LID (although I know Frank has some quibbles about how that worked too). The main issue on that LID was to NOT assess single family homes in NW.
Where the condo issue really came to the fore was the LID for MAX on the transit mall. That's when City Council pretty much declared that future LIDs would need to include condo owners.
April 3, 2009 3:18 PM
Michael H. Wilson Says:
So how do low income people benefit from this
Explain that please, or is all this money on streetcars really to help developers? We call that upper class welfare here I come from.
April 4, 2009 10:09 AM
al m Says:
We call that upper class welfare here I come from.
What do you call bank bailouts?
This is AMERIKA PAL, the rich ALWAYS get richer, at our expense!
Long live the King!
April 4, 2009 11:46 AM
Michael H. Wilson:So how do low income people benefit from this
ws:If you're referring to the streetcar system in the Pearl -- you should be aware that there is actually a good number of affordable rental units in the area.
Yes, the Pearl is nice and "upper class", but it is hardly an exclusionary neighborhood.
If you weren't referring to this fact, I apologize.
April 4, 2009 12:33 PM
Frank Dufay Says:
The main issue on that LID was to NOT assess single family homes in NW.
Of course all the social service agencies were assessed, as were the single occupancy hotels, the churches, the publicly owned facilities.
All of Homer Williams condo assessments were transferred AFTER the public hearing to one vacant lot, leaving his unsold condos free of assessment. Let alone the "owner-occupied" ones.
Sorry...but that IS what happened. The whole concept of assessing properties based on benefit was turned on its head.