Daniel Shefer and Ofra Sharon
A basic premise is that land use and transportation are intertwined. Investment in the transportation system improves accessibility. It improves local, regional or national access to urban activities and subsequently motivates shifts and changes in the location of economic activities. This process is characterized by regional growth which is accompanied by an increase in population and employment. As a result, we expect to see an increase in land values, due to the increase in competition between different activities to locate there.
The main goal of this study is to investigate the impact of capital investment in the Ayalon Freeway in Tel Aviv on land use changes and development densities along the freeway or in close proximity to it. The Freeway improves accessibilities not only locally, but also at the Metropolitan and even at the National level. These changes were explored using three measures: The rate of development of floor space, the change in land use mix (ratio between residence to non-residence), and the changes in density of development (intensity of various land uses).
Different land uses were examined both separately and collectively: Residential, non- residential, services, commercial, and industrial. Changes were explored during a period of 25 years, (between 1982 and 2007). The changes in land use of 72 neighborhoods in the city of Tel Aviv were investigated based on their accessibilities – distance from the Ayalon Freeway. Multi-variate regression models were employed in order to describe and explain the changes found in land use pattern by using several explanatory variables. These variables are – accessibility measures, socio-demographic variables, North-to-South location, and planning policy. The principal conclusion derived from these analyses are that there are statistically significant differences between the neighborhoods located in close proximity to the Ayalon Freeway, as opposed to the neighborhoods located farther away from the Freeway. These differences appear in all of the three measures we explored. The rate of development for non-residential land uses (especially for the service sector) was accelerated in the neighborhoods located in close proximity to the Freeway. The land use mix has changed towards a higher ratio of non-residential land uses; and development densities are clearly intensified with proximity to the Ayalon Freeway.