This report presents the results of an examination of the economic and land-use impacts of the Hiawatha Light Rail
Line. Specifically, the report contains findings on the impact of the line on residential property values, housing
investment, and land-use patterns. Property value impacts were determined through the creation of a hedonic
pricing model for single-family and multi-family residential properties within a one-half mile radius of the
Hiawatha Line stations. Price trends within station areas were examined both prior to and after completion of the
Hiawatha Line in 2004 and in comparison to a control area of southeast Minneapolis. Housing investment trends
were investigated through an examination of building permit data, also broken down into pre- and postconstruction
periods. Land use patterns were examined through analysis of the Metropolitan Council’s sevencounty
land use data base. The findings indicate that construction of the Hiawatha Line has had a positive effect on
property values within station areas. The effect is limited to the west side of the line; on the east side a four-lane
highway and a strip of industrial land uses intervenes and eliminates any positive impact of the line. Results also
show a high level of residential investment (as measured by dollar value of the investment) within station areas
compared to the control area. No changes in land use patterns were detected since completion of the light rail line.
This study demonstrates that completion of the Hiawatha Line has generated value and investment activity in the
Minneapolis housing market.
Goetz, Edward G.; Ko, Kate; Hagar, Aaron; Ton, Hoang; Matson, Jeff.
The Hiawatha Line: Impacts on Land Use and Residential Housing Value.
Center for Transportation Studies.
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