Summarising the evidence on place value and economic outcomes

Evidence relating to the economy is particularly diverse and reflects strong private as well as public benefits from place quality. Given the richness of the available evidence, these benefits are undeniable. Better place quality delivers:

  • Property uplift in the residential sector: influenced by access to views, trees, and open space, lower pollution, mixed use (up to a point), walkability, neighbourhood character, access to public transport (if not too close to homes), external appearance, public realm quality, connectivity, and vitality
  • Property uplift in the retail sector and reduced vacancy: influenced by urban greenery, walkability, public realm quality, external appearance, street connectivity, frontage continuity; all leading to increased retail viability
  • Property uplift in the office sector, and reduced vacancy and depreciation: influenced by walkability, external appearance, design innovation, and street connectivity
  • Viable investments and extended regeneration benefits: by making investment more attractive, enhancing competitiveness through differentiation, and strengthening community support for development
  • Reduced public expenditure: through reduced capital and maintenance costs for roads infrastructure, reduced public realm maintenance and management (including security) costs, support for the historic built environment and urban regeneration, lower crime and policing costs, and reduced health and social care expenditure (thanks to reduced levels of medication, prescriptions, and hospitalisation)
  • Higher local tax take: through attracting new development; and generating a greater willingness to pay for place services from businesses and communities alike
  • Lower costs of living: through lower car use and public transport costs (more viable / cost effective public transport), and lower costs for health insurance, and reduced energy consumption and smaller carbon footprints (from transport, infrastructure and buildings)
  • Higher productivity: a more efficient workforce, easier recruitment of employees, the enabling of higher density development and more efficient land use, greater adaptability of buildings and spaces over time, and avoiding the unnecessary costs associated with bad design.