As the last of the colorful leaves fall from the deciduous trees in the city, it is easier to understand the great gifts provided by our leafy friends during the warmer months. I attended a lecture by New York City Department of Parks & Recreation Commissioner, Adrian Benepe, last week where he outlined a great number of the benefits trees provide on many levels. Aside from the measured effects of slowing climate change, protecting water quality, improving air quality, lowering summer air temperature, conserving natural resources and providing wildlife habitat, there are tangible economic indicators from a real estate perspective as well.
A property’s proximity to a park or other area with trees has a significant impact its value. Just like a landscaped home’s value increases 5 to 11%, New York City’s added street trees increase property values by $52 million each year. Added trees also increase economic activity in business districts and elevate community pride.
I will be sure to remind myself of the significance of trees as an asset for New York City when the buds appear again in the early spring.