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A new NITC report examines the property value impacts of Lane Transit District’s Emerald Express (EmX), a Bus Rapid Transit, or BRT, system that connects downtown Eugene to Springfield, Oregon.

BRT is often seen as an economically powerful transit option, providing high-speed service with a generally lower price tag than a light rail system. It seems intuitive that a location-efficient area, with transportation access boosted by BRT, would be an economically desirable place to live; offering access to jobs, shopping and other destinations. Little research, however, has been done recently in the United States examining to what extent BRT affects property values.

The goal of the latest NITC study, led by Victoria Perk and Martin Catalá of the Center for Urban Transportation Research at the University of South Florida in partnership with Lane Transit District and the Florida Department of Transportation, was to provide a more robust understanding of how BRT services in the U.S. affect surrounding residential property values. 

The final report, Impacts of Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) on Surrounding Residential Property Values, found that the EmX line had a statistically significant positive impact on property values, which stands to benefit the...

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Event Date:
Sep 26, 2017
Content Type: Professional Development Event



WEBINAR SUMMARY
Parking is a serious issue in many urban areas, especially those experiencing rapid population growth. To address this problem, some cities have implemented demand-responsive pricing programs, where parking prices vary depending on the occupancy rate in a previous period. Yet, few empirical studies have rigorously evaluated these programs. In this study, we investigate the impacts of SFpark, a demand-responsive pricing parking program in San Francisco that began in 2011. We observe effects on three important aspects of urban transportation: parking availability, transit bus ridership and congestion. The timing of this program is plausibly exogenous to factors that affect these outcomes of interest since it is based on bureaucratic decision-making, so endogeneity is less of a concern. 

We use data from the SFpark pilot evaluation for on-street parking, which includes hourly data on parking occupancy, metered rates and measures of daily traffic congestion. Additionally, we generate a novel panel data set using micro-level Muni bus transit data at the bus shift-stop level to observe possible effects on...

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Event Date:
Apr 25, 2017
Content Type: Professional Development Event

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As many cities are investing in street improvements to provide better biking and walking experiences, the economic value and impacts of these active transportation facilities remain areas where many practitioners, planners and policy makers are seeking more conclusive evidence. With various modes competing for scarce resources, planners and transportation agencies often struggle with how to justify infrastructure investments for non-motorized modes, particularly when driving is still the predominant mode of transportation in most cities. 

In this project we assess property value impacts of Portland’s “Green Loop” signature bike infrastructure concept, illustrating the importance of considering both accessibility and extensiveness of bike facility networks. The Green Loop is a proposed 6-mile linear open space running through the heart of Portland, connecting existing and new open spaces, parks, gathering areas, and...

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Proponents of advanced bikeways will point out a growing body of research on these facilities’ safety and benefits for cycling. They can now add another benefit: higher home values.

Research led by Jenny Liu of Portland State University looked at property around advanced bikeways in Portland, defined as bicycle boulevards, protected bike lanes and buffered bike lanes. She found positive effects on property values close to one of these bikeways and an even stronger effect where the network was denser.

Liu presents her research Wednesday at the annual meeting of the Transportation Research Board in Washington, D.C. Learn more or download the research paper.

For single family home sales, being a quarter mile closer to an advanced bikeway translated to a $686 premium, while increasing the density by a quarter mile represented a $4,039 premium. For multi-family homes, the effect of being close to a bikeway wasn’t statistically significant on sale price, but increasing the density of bikeways translated to $4,712 of value.

The research can inform policymakers who may question how much residents value bikeways and provide insight into siting decisions. “My results don’t...

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Event Date:
Oct 28, 2016
Content Type: Professional Development Event

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The City of Portland is exploring how distributed “Internet of Things” (IoT) sensor systems can be used to improve the available data that is usable by city engineers, planners, and the public to help inform transportation operations, enable assessments of public health and equity, advance Portland’s Climate Action Plan goals, and create opportunities for economic development and civic engagement.

The City is currently looking at how low-cost air quality sensors can be used to improve and increase real-time understanding of transportation-related pollutants. However, the state of low-cost air quality sensor technology is not usable off the shelf due to sensitivity limitations and interference issues.

This talk will share the results of a pilot evaluation study conducted by the Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) along with background on other roadside air quality...

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Event Date:
Apr 08, 2016
Content Type: Professional Development Event

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Although it is widely claimed that Oregon's economy is dependent on freight movement, economic activity in Oregon has decoupled from physical goods movement. Truck traffic per unit of gross state product has fallen, and even the loss of regular container service to Portland has had no measurable effect on the region's economy.

Oregon's economy has shifted away from freight intensive industries and now depends on knowledge driven sectors (e.g. electronics, software, athletic apparel and footwear professional services) that move very small amounts of freight. In addition freight costs for most output is so small—and declining—that it is a negligible factor in industry profitability and location decisions.

...

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In recent decades, Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) has gained popularity across the United States due to its relatively low costs of development (compared to the investment requirements of putting in a new light rail system, for example) and its potential to drive economic development.

However, there is a need for more comprehensive research devoted to understanding its economic impacts across various sectors.

NITC researcher Joanna Ganning is the lead author on a research paper that will be presented at the annual meeting of the Transportation Research Board this month, which seeks to estimate the effects of BRT stations on employment growth.

Using Longitudinal Employer-Household Dynamics data, Ganning and her research team investigated the impacts of BRT on employment changes of each major industry sector between 2002 and 2010.

The researchers analyzed employment data surrounding 226 BRT stations along nine BRT corridors which were opened during the study period, as well as employment data from equally sized areas around control points.

Metropolitan areas included in the analysis were Phoenix, Los Angeles, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Salt Lake City, New York City, Cleveland, Ohio and Eugene, Oregon.

With the presence or absence of BRT stations as the independent variable, the team found that BRT statistically significantly influenced employment change for just one...

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Event Date:
Mar 04, 2016
Content Type: Professional Development Event

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Transportation costs are typically a household’s second largest expense after housing. Low income households are especially burdened by transportation costs, with low income households spending up to two times as much of their income on transportation than higher income households (Litman, 2013).

Thus, access to location efficient housing is especially important to low income households, including those who use a housing voucher to help pay for housing costs.

This seminar presents the results of a two-year project supported by the Portland region's four public housing authorities to design and test tools to help people with housing vouchers find location efficient housing. We examine the challenges that residents faced and discuss policy implications.

...

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Event Date:
Oct 23, 2015
Content Type: Professional Development Event

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As metropolitan area governments and others promote density-promoting “smart growth” policies, finer analysis is needed to quantify the impact of such policies on households' transportation and housing costs. Existing research suggests that households in urban areas trade-off between housing costs and transportation costs, but does not explore how policies to increase urban densities might explicitly impact this balance. Furthermore, the research does not adequately distinguish between the effect of urban area density and the effects of other factors associated with urban area density (e.g metropolitan area size and household incomes) on housing costs. This research uses the 2000 Census Public Use Micro Sample (PUMS) person and household data from 23 of the nation's most densely populated states to identify the impact of increased population density on three housing cost measures: household rents, housing unit values, and monthly mortgage payments. Log linear models were estimated for each housing cost measure using least-squares regression. Dependent variables included household, housing unit, and geographic area characteristics, including population density. The models were found to be very similar to one another in terms of the...

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