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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Transit Joint Development in the United States

  • Author(s): Robert Cervero
  • Peter Hall
  • John Landis
  • et al.

This report reviews transit-linked development in over two dozen U.S. cities, the history of joint development, and the evolving role of the Federal Transit Administration (formerly the Urban Mass Transit Administration). The report attempts to classify and catalogue existing joint-development projects by size, type, location, and year of completion. Included as an appendix are brief descriptions of the more than one hundred existing U.S. joint-development projects. An analysis was made on the financial impact joint development has had on the capital budgets of transit agencies that pursue joint development and the policy framework in which it occurs.

In addition, the study presents the results of a survey of transit officials responsible for negotiating joint development agreements and their appraisal of its effect on their agency's operating and financial performance as well as other goals.

Finally, the study uses quasi-experimental and multi-regression analysis to measure the effects of joint development and transit service on commercial real estate market performance indicators such as office rents, office absorption rates, and vacancy rates. From the transit side, a similar analysis was done to measure the effects of joint development on system ridership and revenues. These analyses show that transit service and presence of joint development are statistically correlated with unique benefits to the real estate market, namely higher rents, lower vacancy rates, and faster absorption rates.

The study concludes with an assessment of the institutional and market conditions necessary for successful joint development and recommendations to FTA for promoting and facilitating local joint-development efforts.

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