Part of the whole argument for increasing density along Los Angeles' new light-rail and mega-bus lines is that putting more people in new apartments and condos near them will allow locals to ditch their cars for the daily commute to work.
Metro Los Angeles' westward subway and light-rail expansion has been an excuse for building higher and wider in places including Koreatown, West Hollywood and Culver City.
With low vacancy rates and high rents, Greater L.A. desperately needs more places for people to live.
But a new RadPad map and analysis of median, one-bedroom apartments a half-mile from soon-to-open transit stops reiterates what previous research has shown:
Rents at these locations are projected to rise at least 25 percent once the stops open, says the local rental-search start-up that also allows residents to pay their landlords online:
These prices will likely jump at least 25% when these stops come online over the next few years: Gold Line Foothill Extension (Nov ), Exposition Transit Corridor Phase II (Dec ), East Fernando Valley Transit Corridors (June 18 ), Crenshaw/LAX Transit Corridor (April 19 ), Westside Purple Line Extension (May 24 ).
That's a lot.
Rents in Los Angeles are already near the top in the nation. And if you weigh for our relatively low income (less than $28,000 a year per person), we have, as UCLA said last year, the least affordable housing market in the nation.
We need rent relief, not rent hikes.
The big question for you is, Is it worth it? Would the savings obtained by ditching your ride, fuel fill-ups and car insurance be greater than a 25 percent rent hike? Or, if not, is the convenience of living a car-free life of great value to you?
RadPad notes that one huge advantage is something you can't ever get back once it's gone — time:
LA Metro is on a mission to change how Angelenos get around the city, and we’re not talking Uber. Within the next year, there will be upwards of 30 new light rail stations (those are stops that’ll allow you to board a train) to get you around Los Angeles. In what would typically take 90 minutes by car during rush hour, from downtown L.A. to Santa Monica, the new blue line will take just 25 minutes. That’s insane!
But time is expensive. And, in cities where light rail is more prominent, people pay dearly for it. In Boston, living near a rail line can cost 67 percent more.
Here's a map of what you'd currently pay to be near L.A.'s major light rail and regional stops. Know before you go — and before you rent.