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Transit Oriented Development and It's Effect on Property Values: An Atlanta Case Study

Transit-oriented development (TOD) and its effect on property values research has resulted in mixed findings. Some researchers report positive effects on property values while others are negative or inconclusive. Research on cities such as New York City, Boston, Atlanta and San Francisco have focused on the proximity to rail stations and the negative externalities that accompany it by conducting hedonic pricing models. Other studies have focused more specifically on residential or commercial parcels and their property values at different time points of station development.

This research focuses on five MARTA stations within Fulton County, Georgia: Ashby Station, Lindbergh Station, Sandy Springs Station, Vine City Station and West End Station. Data was obtained from MARTA and Fulton County that includes parcel and tax assessor information. Buffers zones within one-fourth mile, one-half mile and one- mile were created around the stations and an average appraised property value and average land value was determined. A comparative analysis was conducted to determine the effects proximity to rail has at stations with planned and unplanned development.

The research shows that TOD in the Atlanta area has minimal impact on property values. What appears to have more of an impact is the median household income of the neighborhood surrounding the transit station, which of course reflects the value of property afforded.