Property price effects of green interventions in cities
A meta-analysis and implications for gentrification

08-07-2020 | Artikel

Although green interventions, like nature-based solutions, contribute to more sustainable urban environments and provide ecosystem services to urban populations, some impacts are not well understood. This particularly applies to social impacts in the domain of environmental justice, including (green) gentrification.

Gentrification refers to a process in which green urban renewal raises property prices, which results in an influx of affluent people, displacing poorer residents. Our study conducts a meta-analysis based on 37 primary hedonic pricing studies, to estimate value transfer functions that can assess the effects of nature types on property prices in various urban settings. Urban nature has positive impacts on house value in the areas surrounding it, which depend on population density, distance to, and the type of, urban nature. We illustrate how the estimated benefit transfer function can be applied to natural interventions in a Dutch city, and visualize the obtained effects using mapping. These maps show the distance decay of the cumulative effects of urban nature interventions on the house value at the city and the neighbourhood levels. Our application estimated increases in local property values up to a maximum of 20 % compared with properties not affected by the interventions, with value equivalent of 62,650 USD, at average prevailing price level in a particular area in Utrecht. When new nature is being planned in urban areas our mapping approach can be used for guiding assessments of potential undesirable effects on property values that may lead to green gentrification, and for identifying where additional policies may be needed to contribute to environmental justice.