The Making of a Historic District and the Economic Impact upon Housing Value: An Empirical Analysis of the Tree Streets Neighborhood in Johnson City, Tennessee


Many urban communities in the United States faced deteriorating physical infrastructure and social environment in the second half of the 20th century. To restore such inner city neighborhoods, many neighborhoods have adopted historic preservation as a means to both aesthetically and fiscally improve the condition. This paper studies a historic district in the Tree Streets neighborhood, Johnson City, Tennessee in regard to its road toward historical preservation and neighborhood restoration. We find that through decades of a local civic organization’s efforts and government planning initiatives, the community has successfully turned from a university slum into a livable neighborhood. We also find that the benefits are not strictly nostalgic but there is a positive economic impact of historic preservation designation on property values. The making of the historic district in the Tree Streets neighborhood both socially and economically has provided a great example of smart growth for Johnson city and other American cities to revitalize urban residential neighborhoods in central cities.


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K. Chen, "The Making of a Historic District and the Economic Impact upon Housing Value: An Empirical Analysis of the Tree Streets Neighborhood in Johnson City, Tennessee," Modern Economy, Vol. 4 No. 12, 2013, pp. 832-838. doi: 10.4236/me.2013.412090.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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