Reconnecting America today released Are We There Yet? Creating Complete Communities for 21st Century America, an ambitious report that tracks progress in America’s regions toward a vision of complete communities.
Calling it a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the region,” an unprecedented local partnership of private, philanthropic and nonprofit leaders was joined by Denver Mayor Michael Hancock to outline how a smart expansion of Denver’s transit system can greatly increase access to opportunity and strengthen quality of life for all local residents, including low-income communities.
The Center for Transit-Oriented Development (CTOD) today launched a first-of-its-kind web database to provide access to comprehensive information about more than 4,000 transit zones across the United States. The web tool will help developers, investors, and city officials make planning decisions that take advantage of development opportunities around transit nodes.
In the next five years as many as 160,000 renters in 20 metro areas could lose their affordable apartments near transit because the contracts on their privately-owned HUD-subsidized rental units are due to expire. The renewed popularity of urban living means that properties in walkable neighborhoods near transit have increased in value, and that property owners are likely to opt out of the HUD program and convert the housing from affordable to market rate.
The December 2008 report by the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission analyzing transit-served areas in the Delaware Valley has been added to the Best Practices section. The report analyzes areas within a half-mile of rail transit stops. The majority of the data in this report comes from Reconnecting America and the Center for Transit-Oriented Development.
The effects of transit-oriented development on housing, parking and travel; the potential for the graying of America to increase transit ridership; and an article that empirically tests for positive network effects in transit use have been added to the Best Practices.
Over the past 18 months, the Center for Transit-Oriented Development (CTOD) has engaged in several initiatives to better understand the obstacles and the opportunities involved in creating diverse and equitable neighborhoods around transit. Changing demographics and traffic are boosting the demand for housing near stations, with demand expected to more than double in the next 25 years. This is good news for all who are concerned about sustainable growth and global climate change, but the increased market interest could drive up prices and drive existing low-income residents out of transit-oriented neighborhoods. Research by our Center for TOD has shown that station areas are currently more diverse economically and racially than the region as a whole.