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The Impact of Business Improvement Districts on Property Values: Evidence from New York City

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Publication Date: May 2007

Publisher(s): Furman Center for Real Estate

Author(s): Ingrid Gould Ellen; Amy Ellen Schwartz; Ioan Voicu

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

Topic: Social conditions (Housing)

Keywords: business improvement districts; economic development; neighborhoods; property values

Type: Working Paper

Abstract:

Our paper aims to fill this gap by examining the impact of BIDs on commercial property values in New York City. With the largest pool of BIDs in the country, New York is an ideal study site. Its 55 BIDs encompass a broad range of budget sizes, services and locations. This large and diverse set of BIDs, together with the city’s tremendous size and diversity of neighborhoods, allows us to examine the impact of BIDs in very different types of areas, including both very high-density office districts and more suburban-style, retail strips. Thus, we can gain some insight into the underlying mechanisms through which BIDs influence property values and the circumstances under which BIDs may be a useful tool for local economic development. Further, the diversity of BID and neighborhood types offers the opportunity to examine the robustness of our findings, and gauge the extent to which the lessons learned can be generalized and applied to other cities and circumstances.