Currently Reading

New Study Complicates Zoning Reform

Advertisement
Zoning

New Study Complicates Zoning Reform


February 1, 2019
Chicago residential street in winter
Photo: Unsplash/Iz Phil

A new study of upzoning in Chicago, published in the journal Urban Affairs Review, finds that the changes led to higher home prices, and no noticeable impact on local housing stock.

MIT doctoral student and report author Yonah Freemark says there were two unanticipated, surprising conclusions gleaned from the study:

 

 

In an email conversation, Freemark tells co-founder and editor-at-large of CityLab Richard Florida, "even if upzoning—in the medium or longer term—increases the number of housing units (though I do not find evidence for or against this in my study), we still have to contend with the potential that the short-term impacts of the change are higher home prices and likely higher rents for those directly affected by the change, especially since new development, as everyone knows, takes many years to get underway. The speculation will come first."

Freemark has analyzed the effects of upzonings in Chicago neighborhoods. His study takes the form of a natural experiment (the “gold standard” of social-science research) by comparing an initial set of zoning reforms, undertaken in 2013 to encourage development around transit stops, with a more aggressive set of reforms from 2015, which expanded the upzoned areas and increased incentives for taller, denser development.

The study design allows Freemark to overcome the analytical problem of an endogenous relationship between upzoning and changes in prices and construction activity. He uses Chicago zoning files to determine the parcels of land affected by the two zoning changes, as well as data on building permits from the city and property values from the Illinois Department of Revenue. The study tracks the period 2010 to 2018, before and after the zoning changes.

Read more

Related Stories

Planning + Development

Thomas Beadel on Splitting Lots, Doubling Inventory

The business model for Thomas James Homes' Trademark by TJH brand brings more opportunities for buyers in neighborhoods where inventory is tight

Zoning

Want a Home With More Space? Consider an ADU First

Nearly 1.4 million single-family properties currently house some sort of accessory dwelling unit, whether it be a guest house, in-law suite ... or…

Zoning

Nebraska Lawmakers Build Support for Relaxing Density Restrictions

Nebraska could become the second state in the nation after Oregon to pass a statewide law on zoning. Single-family homes predominate in Nebraska’s…

Advertisement

More in Category




Advertisement

Create an account

By creating an account, you agree to Pro Builder's terms of service and privacy policy.


Daily Feed Newsletter

Get Pro Builder in your inbox

Each day, Pro Builder's editors assemble the latest breaking industry news, hottest trends, and most relevant research, delivered to your inbox.

Save the stories you care about

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet lorem ipsum dolor sit amet lorem ipsum dolor sit amet.

The bookmark icon allows you to save any story to your account to read it later
Tap it once to save, and tap it again to unsave

It looks like you’re using an ad-blocker!

Pro Builder is an advertisting supported site and we noticed you have ad-blocking enabled in your browser. There are two ways you can keep reading:

Disable your ad-blocker
Disable now
Subscribe to Pro Builder
Subscribe
Already a member? Sign in
Become a Member

Subscribe to Pro Builder for unlimited access

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.