Homeowners close to the ring road or proposed new LRT stations have a reason to smile as a new real-estate study says their property values will increase substantially over those in other Calgary neighbourhoods.

The study, done by the Real Estate Investment Network (REIN), says homes in areas like Falconridge, Martindale, Saddle Ridge, Hawkwood, Tuscany and Scenic Acres will get a 10 to 20 per cent premium in property value over other neighbourhoods, if they are within an 800-metre radius of these projects.

REIN used transportation infrastructure projects in cities like Toronto, Vancouver, Halifax and Edmonton as the basis of their report.

“In every single instance, prices went up 10 to 20 per cent higher than the rest of the market, mostly because it’s about convenience and accessibility,” said REIN president Don Campbell.

The research found that the areas in Calgary that will see the most effects are located in the northeast and northwest because of accessibility to the downtown core.

“Distance is now measured in time, not kilometres,” said Campbell. “If you can shorten time, you’re actually physically moving that neighbourhood closer to the work area.”

Campbell said that as gas prices increase, people are going to be making more green decisions in terms of transportation. “We are going to see the demand of that 800 metres increase more than we’ve seen in history.”

Robert Lebosquain, a real-estate agent with CIR Realty, has seen an increase in demand for homes within a one-kilometre walking distance of an LRT station.

“It appeals to a wider range of people. You don’t need a car to travel,” he said. “Not using a car is important and some people are willing to pay extra so they don’t commute.”

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