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House prices unaffected by wind farm in central New York state
1 July 2006
Property values have not been adversely affected by a 30 MW wind farm installed in central New York in 2001, according to a study by Ben Hoen, a graduate student at the Bard Center for Environmental Policy at Bard College and released by the Fenner Renewable Energy Education Foundation. The six month study, "Impacts of Windmill Visibility on Property Values in Madison County, New York," involved about 5000 residences within five to seven miles of the 20 turbines at the Fenner Wind Power Project. Approximately 500 of the properties had changed hands around the time of the study, which excluded transactions between family members or estate sales. "I ended up with 280 transactions," says Hoen, who visited every home in the study area. "I compared houses down the street from each other where one had a view of the turbines and the other did not, and found that there's very little difference between properties with and without a view." Hoen says he took visibility into account and 20 or so characteristics of each home. "Things like condition, square footage and type of siding." Hoen believes the subject deserves further study and would like to redo his work by combining as many as ten wind projects throughout the country. "The results of this study suggest that communities with mixed populations or mixed home values accept wind energy," he says. "Wind farming seems to fit well with this community that still does a lot of traditional farming. And the development itself seems to fit well with the landscape."
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