The launch of Stage 1 of the light rail network is getting closer, with night testing of light rail vehicles (LRVs) between Gungahlin Place and Nullarbor Avenue already complete and daytime testing rolling out from 13 August 2018. The biggest question on everyone’s lips is, will it lead to increased property value for homeowners along the route between Gungahlin and the city?
Back in 2016, when the ACT Government first signed the contract for the light rail project, Allhomes Chief Data Scientist, Dr Nicola Powell, believed the light rail would positively impact the valuation of houses and units in close proximity to light rail stops. Local real estate agents have generally commented that the light rail project’s potential is being acknowledged by prospective buyers, however the impact on sales won’t be known until the project is completed and the light rail infrastructure is fully functional.
A paper published by the University of Queensland in 2016 outlined how the Gold Coast light rail had positive effects on surrounding property values. The research indicated a 7.1 to 9.5 per cent increase in the market price of residential properties located within a 400m to 2km vicinity of the new rail line. This, of course, took into account variable factors such as the natural growth of real estate prices over the time period.
An improved public transportation system can benefit the region in ways beyond property value, extending into greater demand for real estate as well as providing increased accessibility. A smart, reliable and convenient public transport network will strengthen the city’s infrastructure and as Canberra continues to grow, the light rail will be a leading contributor towards a city that is more liveable and more attractive to tourists, workers, students and investors.