Increasing the Amenity Value and Quality of Life in the Neighborhood
Neighborhood revitalization requires that one builds value to attract buyers and other investors into the neighborhood and to retain existing residents. Amenities and quality of life are a key part of the value offered by a neighborhood.
Many different elements go into building a neighborhood’s amenity values. The table below identifies more than 25 separate elements that must be at least considered in framing a neighborhood market-building strategy.
The table does not indicate which elements should be pursued in a market-building strategy. Strategies to build amenity value must emerge from the particular conditions and opportunities, physical and locational assets that the neighborhood offers. The features of existing parks, shopping or transportation networks will vary widely by neighborhood, as will the opportunities to create new parks, employment centers or public-transit routes.
Elements Impacting Neighborhood Amenity Value
While creating major new open spaces in urban areas is often difficult, opportunities do exist, often by reclaiming former industrial or railroad property . Other urban neighborhoods have existing parks that may have been neglected, but if restored, with better security and maintenance, can add far greater amenity value to the area than before.
Strategies to increase neighborhood amenity values must be firmly based on a clear idea of the characteristics and preferences of the population that the city or CDC is seeking either to retain or attract to the area. An effective strategy to build an area’s housing market requires not only identifying the target groups whom the neighborhood is trying to attract or retain, but identifying and carrying out the specific amenity value strategies that will most powerfully affect their decisions.