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Surprising Science

Bring in a Bike Share to Increase Property Value

Bike shares shown to increase property values up to 2.7 percent.

Living near a school or park isn’t the only thing that can up your property value. Researchers at McGill University in Quebec found that a bike share station can also raise the property value of homes in a neighborhood.

The researchers looked at a number of Montreal neighborhoods to draw their conclusions. Their data consisted of a diverse range of towns that support bike-share programs, have never had them, or had them in the past and lost them. They compared how the prices of the neighborhood’s homes fluctuated based on these differences, using the prices at which the homes were sold (and only ones that were sold more than once). The history of these sales spanned 18 years going back as far as 1996 and being as recent as 2012.

The researchers reported in their paper that “the presence of a bicycle-sharing system in a neighborhood with 12 stations serving an 800-meter buffer” helped to raise the property value of homes by 2.7 percent or about $8,650 on average.

What’s more, “the combined benefits from such systems, including an increase in property taxes, might well outweigh the initial costs,” lead researcher Ahmed El-Geneidy pointed out in a press release. After all, it costs more to ride a car than to ride a bike — not just in gas, but to bridges, roads, and so on. Consider the benefits to infrastructure: Fewer cars on the roads would mean less wear and tear. In an isolated study, biking has been found to be less costly to individuals and communities.

Read the full study or the press release at EurekAlert!

Photo Credit: ERIC FEFERBERG/Getty Images


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