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The Effect of Community Gardens on Neighboring Property Values 

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Publication Date: June 2007

Publisher(s): Furman Center for Real Estate

Author(s): Vicki Been; Ioan Voicu

Special Collection: John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation

Topic: Social conditions (Urban conditions)

Keywords: green space; land use; neighborhoods; property values

Type: Working Paper

Abstract:

Cities across the United States that have considerable vacant land are debating whether to foster community gardens on that land, while cities with land shortages are debating when to replace gardens with other uses. Meanwhile, many cities are looking for new ways to finance green spaces. Little empirical evidence about the neighborhood impacts of community gardens is available, however, to inform the debate or to help cities design financing schemes. This paper estimates the impact of community gardens on neighborhood property values, using rich data for New York City and a difference-in-difference specification of a hedonic regression model. We find that gardens have significant positive effects, especially in the poorest neighborhoods. Higher quality gardens have the greatest positive impact.