Trains For America

More choices for better transportation

High-speed rail increases property values in Spanish towns

When new rail connections are discussed in America, there is a strong misconception, particularly among politicians, that more trains will mean lower property values for the communities served. It may seem counter-intuitive, but such backwards thinking caused a commuter rail line running from Minneapolis to my college town, Northfield, to be killed off a few years ago by anxious state legislators from some communities served by the line (Thanks a lot). So it was with a mix of smugness and sadness that I read this article on the effect of Spain’s high-speed AVE network on house prices:

Spain’s high-speed rail network (AVE) plays a significant role in pushing up property prices throughout the country.

To prove this theory Kyero has launched a new Spanish house price index, which shows property prices in towns and cities served by AVE stations outperform their provincial averages. For example, house prices in Málaga, which is served by the AVE line, are currently 24.7 per cent more expensive than in Andalucia and 23.7 per cent higher than the national average across Spain. Prices in Seville and Córdoba also show a similar trend, where properties are within easy reach of AVE stations.

It makes perfect sense: people like living close to transportation, particularly fast and convenient services such as high-speed trains. Let’s just hope that our own lawmakers can pick up on these trends when making decisions concerning our own rail infrastructure.

Advertisements

Filed under: International High Speed Rail, Passenger Rail Politics, , , , ,

Spanish airlines feeling the crunch due to high speed rail

The AFP reports that Spain’s extensive development of its high speed rail network is putting the crunch on short-distance air carriers. The article contains a number of facts about Spain’s bullet trains that should make anyone who’s ever had to sit on a crowded airplane drool:

The government plans to have 10,000 kilometres (6,200 miles) of high-speed railway track in place by 2020, meaning 90 percent of Spain’s population will live less than 50 kilometres from a bullet train station.

The high-speed AVE trains, which are fitted with video and music players and chairs that can swivel in the direction of travel, can make the 660-kilometre trip between Madrid and Barcelona in about two and a half hours.

Passengers say bullet trains have more roomier and comfortable seats than planes, faster check-in times and have the advantage of arriving and departing from downtown cores.

If you can get over the sad fact that Spain’s policy is light years ahead of anything Congress could even dream of, there’s plenty of good news to be found for American HSR. Primarily, it proves that people want and will use high speed rail. That’s not going to come as a surprise to anyone reading this blog, but it seems to be a lesson that politicians in California and Washington have yet to pick up on.

And while news like this will certainly strike fear into the hearts of the airlines, this could actually be good for them in the long run. The article says that the area where HSR is seriously competing are the trips that would take 3 hours or less. These are the distances that never should have been ceded to the air industry in the first place. And allowing these routes to fall to high speed rail will free up space at our crowded airports, hopefully alleviating problems with delays and ultimately increasing customer satisfaction on the long haul flights that airlines should be paying attention to.

Filed under: International High Speed Rail, Travel Woes, , , , ,

Blog Stats

  • 491,792 hits

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 2,431 other followers

wordpress stat

Top Clicks

  • None
October 2017
S M T W T F S
« Dec    
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031  

Categories