Is “transit, transit, transit” the new “location, location, location”?
As the public transit system in the Puget Sound area expands, projecting to grow to 116 miles by 2041, the real estate market is taking note. The American Public Transportation Association (“APTA”) teamed up with the National Association of Realtors (“NAR”) to release a fascinating report, titled “The Real Estate Mantra – Locate Near Public Transportation.” The report analyzed the effect the expansion of public transportation systems has on real estate located close to such systems.
APTA and NAR analyzed seven metropolitan areas across the United States, from Boston to Los Angeles, and, of course, Seattle. It looked at effects on both, commercial and residential real estate, including rentals, between 2012 and 2016. The areas studied are defined as ones within a half-mile radius from public transit. Overall, median price increases near transit hubs were between 4 and 24% higher for those areas than the ones further away.
When it came to the Seattle metro area, the report focused on the public transit in the King-Pierce-Snohomish county region. In 2016, 167,690 people resided within a half mile of public transit – roughly 5% of the region’s total population of 3,614,361 residents. Furthermore, 22 percent of those employed used public transportation to get to and from work – and 27 biked or walked. A transit shed is defined as “an aggregation of transit zones to create a single geographical unit”, per the report.
According to the report, which can be accessed here, the median residential sales prices in the transit shed increased about 43% between 2012 and 2016 – about 13% higher than in the areas not near transit. Properties near the First Hill Streetcar and the LINK saw the biggest increase, of about 55%. The rents were also affected – rental rates in the transit shed increased about 18% during that timeline – as compared to 8% overall for the region. We urge you to read the report, in its entirety, here.
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