Transit oriented development (TOD) is a mixed-use area designed to allow for easy access to public transport, as well as facilitating walking and cycling. In this day and age, TOD is quickly growing in popularity and taking real estate development by storm. A big reason for TOD's growth is millennials. Their preference for public transportation and their pursuit of the “live, work, play” lifestyle is quickly changing the landscape of American Real Estate.
At 95 million, millennials have eclipsed Gen X as the largest generation alive. While Gen X has generally gravitated towards the suburban sprawl, millennials prefer the centralized, urban environments of the city. Reasons for this can be attributed to qualities that have defined their generation.
Millennials are the social generation that keeps their friends and family at their fingertips. Smartphones and social media have ensured that millennials are constantly connected and communicating. This aspect transcends to real life as well, where millennials want social interaction to be only a few steps away. As a result, they’re quickly shedding the suburbs for urban hubs, where they can mingle and everything is within reach. As a result, mixed use developments have proven to be extremely popular for millennials. Millennials prefer restaurants, offices, and amenities a short walk- not drive- away. A plaza with an office, restaurants and an apartment is a millennials dream.
Car ownership among millennials is declining as well. Studies have found that 66% of millennials under 25 own cars, as opposed to 75% in 2007. Millennials are trading personal vehicle ownership for public transportation. A big reason for this is debt. Many millennials are putting off home and car loans due to the large amounts of college debt they’ve accumulated. Millennials are also a more environmentally conscious demographic and are opting for green transportation. Public transit is becoming the go-to option for millennials.
As millennials continue to dominate the workplace, they are changing the way cities are being built. Urban real estate is definitely moving towards transit oriented development.
Check out some of the rising TOD developments in Los Angeles here! http://la.curbed.com/tags/transit-oriented-development
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