Property Values, Transit, and the Recession: A Case Study of L.A. Metro’s Gold Line in Pasadena, California
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Extensive literature has explored the connection between transit infrastructure, land use, and land values. While it is generally accepted that transit infrastructure generates land value premiums for parcels within close proximity to transit stations, little research has analyzed the resilience of these parcels in recessionary times. In light of the recent economic downturn, this paper will explore the pliability of tax lots in Pasadena along Metro’s Gold Line, answering the questions: 1. Are land values of property surrounding transit resilient to recessionary trends? 2. Is land surrounding transit valued higher than land without transit infrastructure? 3. Is there a discrepancy in land values between individual station locations? During the recession, December 2007 through June 2009, property values throughout the Pasadena area fell significantly. Transit infrastructure did not help properties maintain their land values during the recession, contrasting the findings of The Center for Neighborhood Technologies (2013). Furthermore, residential land within the transit shed was valued significantly lower than property ½ mile from transit stations. Conversely, commercial property with transit infrastructure is generally valued higher than comparable land throughout the region. Land values were also heavily influenced by geography. Clusters of significantly high land values were witnessed in the affluent South Pasadena and North Pasadena communities. Lower land values were concentrated within Pasadena’s urban core and along highway infrastructure.