A meta-analysis of the impact of rail projects on land and property values

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date


Subject Area

land use - impacts, land use - transit oriented development, mode - rail, place - asia, place - europe


Meta-analysis, Rail, Land/property value, Publication bias


The literature on land and property values demonstrates a great deal of variability in the estimated change in values arising from rail investments. This paper conducts a meta-analysis on empirical estimates from 23 studies (102 observations) that analysed the impact of rail on land/property value changes. Variation in the estimated impacts is calculated and discussed in relation to key dimensions of study-design characteristics. The results show that a number of factors produce significant variations in the estimates. These include the type of land use, the type of rail service, the rail system life cycle maturity, the distance to stations, the geographical location, accessibility to roads, methodological characteristics, as well as whether the impacted area is land or property. On the other hand, we observe that changes in purchase price and rent values due to rail projects are statistically similar to each other, that there is no evidence of change in values over time nor due to the location of land/property within the city, and that including property characteristics and neighbourhood type in the estimation model do not change values significantly. Publication bias tests are also performed and show that although researchers tend to report both positive and negative results, they tend to be biased towards statistically significant estimates.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by Elsevier, copyright remains with them.


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