May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 22

FINANCE FOR THE FIELD
The Impact of Trails and Greenways
on Property Values
By John L. Crompton, Ph.D.

I

n 1989, the President's Commission on Americans Outdoors recommended the nation develop a system of recreational corridors: " Fingers of green
that reach out from and around and through communities all across America. " They called for a " prairie fire of local action " to implement the vision.
Three factors came together to create a " perfect storm, " which ignited that vision.
First, Congress was concerned the
dramatic contraction of active rail
lines from their peak of 254,251 miles
in 1916 to 141,000 miles by 1980 was
resulting in a loss of land corridors
- which preempted any future reactivation that may be desired for military or mass transportation purposes.
Consequently, in 1983 to preserve the
corridors for potential future transportation uses, Congress amended section
8(d) of the National Trail Systems Act
(often called the Railbanking Act or
the Rails-to-Trails Act) to preserve established railroad corridors for interim
trail and future rail use. This legislation
spurred an extraordinary surge in trails.
The lack of funding needed to compensate adjacent landowners and to
pay for the cost of transitioning rail
line beds to hike-bike trails was a bar-

rier to realizing the potential of the
railbanking provision. The second element in the " perfect storm " was the
1992 federal Transportation Bill. This
included a component that funded
nontraditional projects that enhanced
the existing transportation infrastructure. The funds provided up to 80 percent of the cost of a project, so local
and state entities were required to finance only 20 percent of the cost. This
offered a strong incentive for local trail
initiatives. Similar enhancement funding has been included in every subsequent Transportation Bill.
The third factor emerged in the last
quarter of the 20th century, when
Americans became much more aware
of the importance of exercise in maintaining good health. During the 1970s
and 1980s, 25 million Americans took
up running while many more engaged
in regular walking. The most recent
survey by the National Association of
Homebuilders reported that walking/
jogging trails ranked third or fourth
among all homebuyer age groups as
most desired local amenities on a list
of 19. This reflects the growing prominence of trails in both the commuting
and leisure dimensions of people's lives.

Gauging Property
Owners' Perceptions
For the most part, the rationale un20

Parks & Recreation

| M AY 2 02 0 | PA R K S A N D R E C R E AT I O N .O R G

derlying the proposition that trails
and greenways may positively influence property values differs from that
associated with parks. Unlike parks,
any added property value is not likely
to come from the views of nature or
open space that a property owner enjoys, because in many cases, especially in urban trail contexts, there are no
such vistas. Rather, any added value
derives from access to the linear trail.
It is a trail's functionality or activity
potential that is likely to confer added
value, not the panorama of attractive
open space.
In a recent article published in the
Journal of Park and Recreation Administration, Sarah Nicholls, a professor in
the department of business at Swansea
University's School of Management,
and I reviewed findings of studies that
evaluated the impact of trails on property values. Those conducted in the
1980s and 1990s relied on responses to
surveys by people living next to trails.
Typically, they were asked two
questions. First, did the trail increase
or decrease their property's value?
Opinion surveys from the 10 urban
studies addressing this question reported that among 2,647 households
residing proximate to 24 urban trails,
only 6 percent perceived trails had a
negative impact on their property. In
contrast, 47 percent believed the trail
increased their property's value.
Among the 1,212 proximate property owners along eight primarily
rural trails, most perceived the trail
did not influence their property's
value. Again, only 6 percent report-



May 2020 - Parks & Recreation

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of May 2020 - Parks & Recreation

May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 1
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 2
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 3
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 4
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 5
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 6
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 7
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 8
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 9
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 10
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 11
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 12
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 13
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 14
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 15
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 16
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 17
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 18
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 19
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 20
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 21
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 22
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 23
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 24
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 25
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 26
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 27
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 28
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 29
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 30
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 31
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 32
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 33
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 34
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 35
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 36
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 37
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 38
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 39
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 40
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 41
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 42
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 43
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 44
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 45
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 46
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 47
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 48
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 49
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 50
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 51
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 52
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 53
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 54
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 55
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 56
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 57
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 58
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 59
May 2020 - Parks & Recreation - 60
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2019
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2017
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2016
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2015
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2015
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2015
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2015
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2015
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2015
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2015
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2015
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2015
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2015
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2015
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2015
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2014
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2014
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2014
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2014
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2014
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2014
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2014
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2014
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2014
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2014
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2014
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2014
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2013
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2013
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2013
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2013
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2013
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2013
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2013
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2013
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2013
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2013
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2013
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2013
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2012
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/october-2010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/september-2010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/august-2010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/july-2010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/june-2010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/may-2010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/april-2010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/march-2010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/february-2010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/january-2010
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/december-2009
https://www.nxtbook.com/nrpa/ParksRecreationMagazine/november-2009
https://www.nxtbookmedia.com