Key Element References
1) a. The Impacts of Rail-Trails: A Study of the Users and Property Owners from Three Trails
2) Cutting Edge Research in Trails and Greenways Michigan’s Project
3) The Impact of the Little Miami Scenic Trail on Single Family Property Values
4) Home Sales near Two Massachusetts Rail Trails
5) Rail Trails and Safe Communities, the Experience on 372 Trails
6) Elizabeth Township, Pa. Letter from Police Chief Concerning Safety on Rail Trails
7) Use and Users of the Pere Marquette Rail Trail in Midland County Michigan
8) Study of Nearby Businesses and Adjacent Residential Landowners to the Isabella County Extension of the Pere Marquette Rail-Trail
9) Perceptions of How the Presence of Greenway Trails Affect the Value of Proximate Properties A comparison of the lots within the original Highridge Estates subdivision indicated that those lots immediately adjacent to the trail sold for an average of nine percent higher than other lots. In addition to selling for more, the lots along the trail also sold faster. (Note: Use the link above and go to Bicycle Paths: Safety Concerns and Property Values Los Angeles County then go to Resource viii in that document.
10) Economic Impacts of Protecting Rivers, Trails, and Greenway Corridors This extensive resource book covers many aspects of the positive values of greenways. The book contains substantial quantitative information. A chapter of particular interest addresses the concerns of abutters, especially property values of adjacent properties. (Note: “A bicycle race on a rail trail in Pennsylvania generated an estimated direct economic impact of $330,000 within Allegheny County.”)
11) A Case Study Measuring Economic and Community Benefits of Michigan’s Pere Marquette Rail-Trail Use of the PMRT is extensive with an estimated 178 thousand section visits from April through September. The study found 97% satisfied with the experience and 3% suggesting pavement improvements and more bathrooms. (Note: Use the link above and then Executive Summaries)
12) Weston Rail Trail Task Force Minority Report This report lists negative impacts if a section of the Weston Rail Trail is not built leaving cyclists the only option of riding on city streets between the two sections where the rail trail will be built. This will result in the potential for traffic congestion and an increase in bicycle/automobile accidents.
13) Conclusion about the Root River and Luce Line Trails, Based on Results of a Landowner Survey This study determined the landowners’ attitude about property values and problems with crime. Desirability improved over time. Businesses had some economic benefits and anticipate more benefits once the trail is completed.
14) Rails-with-Trails: Lessons Learned (Federal Highway Administration) This report offers conclusions about the lessons learned in the development, construction, and operation of "rails-with-trails" so that railroad companies, trail developers, and others can benefit from the history of trails in existence today.
15) Frequently Asked Questions about Rail Trails This site lists questions which are frequently asked concerning rail trails, particularly pertaining to the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail. It then provides answers to those questions from information compiled from multiple sources.
Topics discussed include: rail trail construction, rail trail costs, property values and economic impacts, quality of life on the rail trail, physical properties of rail trails, use of the trail, rail trail and the environment, and other related topics.
16) Studies of Proposed and Existing Rail Trails (Friends of the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail) There are many rail trails currently in use or in planning stages across the US. This site provides a list of some of the studies and related materials which may be useful in understanding the issues and how other rail trail efforts have addressed these issues.#
17) On-Street Bikeways and Off-Street Trails: An Integrated Approach -Overview This site provides a PowerPoint presentation on Portland, Oregon’s bikeway system. Bicycle ridership is increasing as the system is expanding.
18) Estimating the Economic Value and Impacts of Recreational Trails: a Case Study of the Virginia Creeper Rail Trail Based on the results reported in this study, promoting trail-related recreational and tourism events appears to be a viable strategy for increasing economic growth in a local community. Because overnight tourists spend more on lodging, food and other goods and services, economic growth would be stimulated the greatest by promoting more multiple-day visits and providing many opportunities for local spending (for instance, local hotels, restaurants and other attractions).
19) La Route Verte, Quebec (The Green Route) The Route Verte (in English, the “Green Route” or the “Greenway”) is a network of bicycling and multiuse trails and designated roads, lanes, and surfaces, spanning approximately 2437 miles as of October 31, 2007 in the Canadian province of Quebec.
20) East Coast Greenway The East Coast Greenway is a project to create a nearly 3000-mile urban path linking the major cities along the Atlantic coast of the United States, from Calais, Maine to Key West, Florida for non-motorized transportation. Over 21 percent of the route is already on safe, traffic-free paths.
21) Bicycle Paths: Safety Concerns and Property Values - Los Angeles County, Metropolitan Transport Authority “There are many misconceptions about the safety of bicycle paths/trails and their relationship to property values/the real estate market. The LA MTA assembled a collection of excerpts from various websites, journals and other online resources that provide information on the often misunderstood nature of bicycle paths/trails and their effect on the community.”# (Note: Use the link above and then go to the report)
22) Public Choices and Property Values, Evidence from Greenways in Indianapolis. “This study examines the MLS database of sales of about 10,000 homes. The study relates the selling price to a long list of variables, including proximity to rail trails. A sophisticated analysis shows that this proximity is statistically insignificant except for Monon Rail Trail. The Indianapolis Star noted, “It may not have sand and crashing waves, but the Monon Trail is the equivalent of beachfront property in the Indianapolis area."# (Note Use the link above and then go to the report)
23) Frequently Asked Questions about Bikeways by Adjacent Residents, Cycling in Vancouver “Previous studies indicate that property values and crime rates are not affected by bike routes. Cyclists on bike routes, like commuters in cars are generally headed to a specific destination and are not interested in lingering in neighborhoods. Unlike automobile commuters, cyclists travel at slower speeds and may provide “an eyes on the street” presence in the neighborhood.”&
24) Bike Path Phobia: Selling Skeptics on Urban Greenway Bike Path Safety “A number of studies have now shown that urban greenway trails do not increase crime and in fact, are commonly regarded as improvements by adjacent property owners. Comparisons of mugging, assault, rape, and murder make it quite clear that rail-trail crime rates are almost non-existent on a per capita comparison to other areas.”&
25) Economic Benefits of Trails and Greenways - Rails to Trails Conservancy “A 1998 study of property values along the Mountain Bay Trail in Brown County, Wisconsin shows that lots adjacent to the trail sold faster and for an average of 9 percent more than similar property not located next to the trail.” &
26) Economic Impacts of Rivers, Trails and Greenways: Property Values, Resource Guide “A study of property values near greenbelts in Boulder, Colorado, noted that… other variables being equal, the average value of property adjacent to the greenbelt would be 32 percent higher than those 3,200 feet away.”&
27) The Social and Economic Benefits of Transportation Enhancements Interstate 4 in Seminole County, Florida isolated two large networks of bicycle and multi-use trails. By building a bicycle/pedestrian bridge over the highway, county officials united two communities and connected the trail networks. As a result, County Commissioner Daryl McLain noted that “property values along the new [connected] trail have already shown increases.”&
28) Review of Future Development of High-Speed Passenger Rail Future development will depend on addressing financial and other challenges facing the federal government.
29) Rails to Trails (Shepherd’s Vineyard, Apex, N.C “Realizing the selling power of greenways, developers of the Shepherd’s Vineyard housing development in Apex, North Carolina added $5,000 to the price of 40 homes adjacent to the regional greenway. Those homes were still the first to sell.” Also in reference 25.& (Note: Use the link above and then search on Shepherd’s Vineyard)
30) Bridging the Gap - Bikeway Usage in Portland, Oregon Since the mid-1990’s Portland, Oregon has pursued a “build it and they will come” strategy by developing its bikeway network to promote increased bicycle use. Between 1992 and 2005 Portland increased its developed bikeway network by 215% from 83 miles to 260 miles.
Annual bicycle counts on Portland’s central city bridges, which connect close-in residential neighborhoods across the Willamette River to the city’s primary commercial and employment center, show a 210% increase in bicycle trips between 1991 and 2004.
31) Rails and Trails - Michigan State University Research Studies This web site shares many presentations and reports of multi-year, multi-trail findings on trails in Michigan.
32) Economic (and other) Benefits of Trails, Greenways and Open Space This site developed for the (Miami Valley) Dayton, Ohio rail trails lists anecdotal evidence for economic (and other) benefits based on: expenditure by residents, commercial uses, tourism, corporate relocation and retention, public cost reduction, affordability, property values, intrinsic values and safety. Links to references not included in this document are provided.
33) Rail Trail Statistics, Rail Trail Conservancy This site lists information, which is updated periodically, to provide current information about Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, the trails movement and rail-trail use at the national and state level.
34) Nebraska Rural Trails: Three Studies of Trail Impact “This 98 page study looks at the impact of rural rail trails for three trails in Nebraska and one in Iowa. The responses are broken down into three groups: residents, businesses and rural property owners. Overall the first two groups are positive concerning the impact of the trails. The opinions of the property owners are more mixed.” #
35) Economic Impact of Investments in Bicycle Facilities, A Case Study of the North Carolina Northern Outer Banks (April, 2004) This study found 680,000 visitors bicycle in the area annually, representing 17% of area tourists, 43% cited bicycling as an important factor in selecting the area for vacation, and 53% cited bicycling as a strong influence in the decision for a return visit. Bicycling visitors generate an estimated economic impact of $60 million.
36) Rails with Trails Lessons Learned: Existing US Rails with Trails About 65 Rails with Trails encompass more than 239 mi in 30 U.S. States today.
38) Trails and High-Speed Rail - Are They Compatible? This article’s focus is on the offset of a trail from the rail to minimize induced wind and kicked-up dust and debris.
# = Description from: http://www.brucefreemanrailtrail.org/trail_plans/rail_trail_studies.html
& = Description from: Metro LA Bicycle Paths: Safety Concerns and Property Values Ref 21 http://www.brucefreemanrailtrail.org/trail_plans/rail_trail_studies.html
(Note: Use this link and then go to report)