Washington, DC’s “textbook example” of value capture

The NoMa-Gallaudet U station in Washington, DC. Beyond the tracks is development that was catalyzed by the opening of the station in 2004. (Image: Elvert Barnes, Flickr)

Many cities are increasingly realizing the need for and value of transit systems in building more affordable, equitable, and resilient communities. Value capture is one powerful tool for communities trying to find the funds to build high-quality transit while spurring or accommodating existing growth. But what is value capture and what does it look like when done well?

This month on Building Better Communities with Transit, our host Jeff Wood talks with Stan Wall of HR&A Advisors to help answer those questions. Stan, formerly the Director of Real Estate and Station Planning for WMATA in Washington, DC, explains what value capture is and provides some examples, including an infill station along the red line. That station, today known as the NoMa–Gallaudet U station, is “the most textbook, beautiful example of the possibilities in creating value and leveraging that to extreme positive benefit for a city,” according to Stan.

Since it’s construction, the NoMa–Gallaudet U station has catalyzed “almost $2 billion in development to-date and shows no signs of stopping.” Beyond the specifics of the NoMa station, Stan talks about other copycat projects—including the planned Potomac Yards metro station in Alexandria, VA—and other catalytic projects around existing stations.

Building Better Communities with Transit is intended to provide more support to communities and local leaders who are working to catalyze new development around transit, give more people access to public transportation, increase access to opportunity, and build robust local economies.

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