Demographic Change, Diversity and Displacement in Newly Transit-Rich Neighborhoods

Community advocates have expressed concerns about the potential for gentrification and displacement when new transit stations open. The research presented here was designed to better understand patterns of neighborhood change in neighborhoods with new fixed-guideway transit stations. The analysis focused on the impacts on low-income households, people of color and renters, three groups who need high-quality, affordable transit and are likely to use such transit when it is provided. Changes in a broad range of demographic, housing, and transportation characteristics were analyzed in 42 neighborhoods in 12 metropolitan areas first served by fixed-guideway transit between 1990 and 2000 and compared to changes in each neighborhood’s corresponding metropolitan area. While neighborhood changes varied, the most predominant pattern saw incomes, housing values, and rents rise more rapidly and vehicle ownership become more common than in the corresponding metropolitan region as a whole. Gentrification, characterized by increasing property values and incomes, occurred in the majority of the newly transit-served neighborhoods studied. One negative consequence of such gentrification was rapidly increasing rents, creating higher housing cost burdens for renter households. In addition, a new transit station sometimes set in motion a cycle of unintended consequences in which core transit users such as renters and low income households were priced out of transit-rich neighborhoods by higher-income, car owning residents less likely to use public transit for commuting. These neighborhood change patterns work against the goal of surrounding stations with “transit-oriented neighbors” who will regularly use the transit system.


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: DVD
  • Features: References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 18p
  • Monograph Title: TRB 90th Annual Meeting Compendium of Papers DVD

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01332908
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: 11-3567
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Feb 17 2011 6:34PM