Having a nature trail close to your home can boost its financial value, according to research from the University of Cincinnati.
Researchers Rainer vom Hofe, an associate professor of planning, and Olivier Parent, an assistant professor of economics, examined how the Little Miami Scenic Trail — a 12-mile southern stretch of the trail that runs through the Cincinnati metropolitan region — impacted residential property values in Hamilton County, Ohio. The multipurpose trail beckons walkers, hikers, skaters, and bicycle enthusiasts, and also has horseback riding paths.
Housing prices went up by $9 for every foot closer to the trail entrance. Ultimately, the study concluded that for the average home, home owners were willing to pay a $9,000 premium to be located one thousand feet closer to the trail.
The average home studied was about 40 years old and had an average 2,203 square feet of living space. The average price was $263,517.
Even amid tough economic times and tough budget decisions by local governments, the research emphasizes that investment in infrastructure and public amenities is a solid investment that will result in a positive return for communities.