NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Vicki Been

New York University School of Law
40 Washington Square South, 314H
New York, NY 10012

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NBER Working Papers and Publications

September 2014Preserving History or Hindering Growth? The Heterogeneous Effects of Historic Districts on Local Housing Markets in New York City
with Ingrid Gould Ellen, Michael Gedal, Edward Glaeser, Brian J. McCabe: w20446
Since Brooklyn Heights was designated as New York City's first landmarked neighborhood in 1965, the Landmarks Preservation Commission has designated 120 historic neighborhoods in the city. This paper develops a theory of heterogeneous impacts across neighborhoods and exploits variation in the timing of historic district designations in New York City to identify the effects of preservation policies on residential property markets. We combine an extensive dataset of residential transactions during the 35-year period between 1974 and 2009 with data from the Landmarks Preservation Commission on the location of the city's historic districts and the timing of the designations. Designation raises property values within historic districts, but only outside of Manhattan. In areas where the value of...
 
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