Victor Hiking Trails Inc.

Articles of Enduring Interest

11/3/13 Trails Effects on Property Values

While there have been many studies of the effect on property values near trails through out the US -- nearly all showing a positive effect --, and an informal study of ads saying something like "Near Trail!" vs "Not Near Any Trail!" (a lot to zero), an October '11 study of home prices in Hamilton County, Ohio by the University of Cincinnati gives some very precise data.

"The current study focused on 1,762 residential properties located within 10,000 feet of the trail." The trail in this case was a 12-mile section of Ohio's Little Miami Scenic Trail, a multi-use trail like our Auburn and Lehigh Trails. "The research used street network distances between residential properties and the closest trail entrance." The homes "average 2,203 square feet of living space. The average price was $263,517."

The take away numbers are "housing prices went up by nine dollars for every foot closer to the trail entrance. Ultimately, the study concluded that for the average home, homeowners were willing to pay a $9,000 premium to be located one thousand feet closer to the trail."

5/18/13 Kentucky Police Chief: Trail Likely to Deter Crime in Hopkinsville

This Rails-to-Trails blog entry consists mostly of quotes from a Kentucky New Era, the local paper, piece (that requires a subscription), Police chief expects safe rail-trail. It is an interview with Chief of Police Guy Howie, who has had professional experience with trails in prior positions. Hopkinsville is considering their first rail-trail. He is all for trails as a safety feature for the community. The increase in adjacent property values is just a side effect for him.

A couple of extracts from the extract:

"What's there now, it's already being used by some for both legal and illegal purposes. Once we improve that and it's being utilized by law-abiding citizens, and it's maintained and kept up, the people who are using it for illegal purposes now aren't going to want to stay because they don't want to be discovered."

"Every place that we looked or I talked about, or had personal knowledge of, any time those facilities are used, there's generally not a problem. Nowhere could we find where crime went up along those areas to any significant extent. ... There are projects like this all across the country. Nobody has come up with any research that we're aware of to the contrary, or to the negative. It's just a perception, and where it comes from, I don't know."

KNE: "Do you think people who have property that abuts the trail should be concerned?" Howie: "No. I think they should be ecstatic. Right now, it's already being used by those people. ... It's deserted and that's why they're using it. If I owned a piece of property and it backed up to the rail-trail, I would be excited that it's going to be improved."

This mirrors the experiences of Victor, as well. Prior to establishing the Auburn Trail, there were a couple of local "party hangouts." After being cleaned up and the trail being used by the "good guys," there has been no further problems.

The comments in the blog article all are equally as positive, from many different viewpoints.

10/15/12 Poison Ivy News

NPR has an article on a new invention, not yet on the market, that makes poison ivy oil visible. Caution: nasty picture! It also has immediately useful information on some of the best ways of cleaning the oil off.

"So, OK, [inventor and poison ivy expert and sufferer] Braslau's spray lets you know you've been exposed to urushiol [the oil in poison ivy]. Then what, I asked her?

"TecNu," she replied.

TecNu is a water-free cleanser. There are other soaps that work getting the oil off - for example, that stuff called Goop car mechanics use to degrease their hands, Braslau says, and some dish-washing detergents. But she relies on TecNu."

There is plenty of poison ivy in the Victor area including on and near our trails.