Property values are often a contentious point when residents are informed about new cycleway plans. It’s used as an argument against the bike lanes, when in reality, it should be used as an argument for them. We’ve found some research on the matter, and overall it seems that cycle lanes have either very little or beneficial impact on property prices and quickness of sale. Often they’re used as a selling point, and also attract people to an area. Once there, residents almost all agree that they’re of value to the community.
Here are some links with more info. Key quotes pulled out below:
“The new bike lanes are absolutely an attractive selling point, putting Atlanta in the limelight as a progressive city,” she said. “There’s a shortage of inventory in the Atlanta real estate market right now. The metro area was down 21 percent in inventory this time last year (2012), so when you add a citywide initiative like this, I think we’re going to be seeing listings that would have been sitting for 60 to 90 days a few years ago, going under contract within 24 hours — easy.”
Vancouver saw a similar effect in 2010 with 65 percent of realtors using new bikeways as a selling feature on a home.Pittsburgh, whose bike lanes were added in 2007, found that bike lanes not only influenced residential real estate activity, but ignited commercial and business activity as well. And, in North Carolina, realtors found that 40 homes adjacent to the Shepherd’s Vineway Bikeway saw property increases of $5,000 and up.
Fairfax interviewed Nic, a local real estate agent, who said that the Bourke Street bike path has had a “positive effect and influence on sales in the area” as well as Don, an owner-builder, selling a recently renovated million dollar property. Don explained the combination of a garage at the rear and the bike path out the front had added a premium of $100,000 to his house. Like many, Don had been sceptical, particularly because of the loss of on-street car parking, but now that the Parisian style bike boulevard with gardens and street lamps has been finished, even he agrees that Bourke Street “looks good”.
A model developed in the US, as part of research that examined factors affecting property values in Delaware, showed that a bicycle path would be expected to increase property values by about US$8,800. The research indicated that the presence of a bike path either increased property values and ease of sale slightly or had no effect.
And finally, some balanced research on the topic:
Summary Opinion of Research Review The majority of studies indicate that the presence of a bike path/trail either increases property values and ease of sale slightly or has no effect. Studies have shown that neighbors of many bike paths/trails feel that the quality of life of their neighborhood has been improved, that the trails were a good use of open space, and in the case of abandoned railways were an improvement from before the trails went in. There is definitely a large portion of the population that sees bike paths as an amenity and will seek out residences near trails, parks, and other natural resource areas.