The Greater Toronto Area (GTA) is undergoing a massive transportation overhaul that will see the funding of some 52 public transit projects. The Real Estate Investment Network (REIN) reports the changes have the potential to deliver a 10- to 20% increase in property values.
The GTA is currently home to over 5.5 million people. Some estimates project the area will grow by another 3 million people by 2031.
In the GTA alone, every major public transportation system continues to overhaul services to increase frequency. Around the GTA, including Hamilton, Barrie and Kitchener-Waterloo, the story is the same.
A study conducted by REIN has shown that real estate values increase for properties located within 500-800 metres of stations on new transportation lines. Because commuting is measured in time and not distance, the more accessible public transportation is to a property, the more of an affect it will have on rents and resale value of the property.
Transportation overhauls in our areas of investment are slated to include:
- GO Train service expansion to Barrie: Hourly service to and from Barrie via bus; rush-hour train service. Expanded GO train and bus services between Hamilton and Toronto: Much like Barrie GO Transit services, trains and buses now run hourly between Hamilton and Toronto.
- KWC will upgrade its current transit system to run a light rail transit (LRT) system from Waterloo to Cambridge. The project is designed to improve connectivity between Cambridge and Waterloo and alleviate congestion as the region’s population continues to grow. The current population of 500,000 is expected to grow to 729,000 within 25 years.
- The Hamilton Street Railway Company has expanded its Route A and Route B lines on its recently upgraded light rail transit (LRT) system to improve commutes around the city. Routes have access Hamilton’s GO Transit station, making access to Toronto more convenient.
In 2007, the Ontario government enacted a transportation program called ͞Move Ontario 2020͟, designed to provide long term funding to transportation changes throughout the province. Not only will this initiative help make commuting around the GTA much easier, it will have a direct influence on rental rates and property values. Lower income areas—where rental properties are often the main source of housing—closer to transit systems will usually net the investor higher rents and resale values as the costs of vehicle ownership continue to rise.
In studies across North America, results have consistently shown that property values in neighbourhoods close to transit systems had premiums ranging between 3% and 40%.
All of our investment areas are within close proximity to major transit systems including Go Transit, Barrie Transit, Grand River Transit in Kitchener and the Hamilton Street Railway Company.