The impacts of an urban light rail system on residential property values: a case study of the Houston METRORail transit line


Qisheng Pan

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

place - north america, mode - tram/light rail, land use - transit oriented development, economics - appraisal/evaluation


light rail transit, residential property values, ordinary linear regression, multi-level regression, Houston


Though the impact of rail transit service on property values has been investigated for transit rail lines in a number of cities, the effects of the Houston light rail transit (LRT) line have not been examined since it began service. This study utilizes the 2007 InfoUSA household data-sets to analyze the impacts of the Houston’s LRT line on residential property values. In addition to the traditional ordinary linear regression models that have been widely used in transit impact studies, a multi-level regression model is adopted in this study to identify the effects of the METRORail on the Main Street Corridor. The results from both models suggest that the opening of the light rail has had significant net positive effects on some residential property values. However, immediate proximity to light rail stations and bus stops has significant negative impacts on properties located within a quarter mile of rail stops.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Taylor&Francis, copyright remains with them.