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People's Daily Online>>China Society

Subway expansion enables flight to the cheaper suburbs (3)

By Wang Ying  (China Daily)

13:34, December 21, 2011

Selling the station

The metro network is also triggering more sophisticated forms of real estate development around the city's new hubs - metro stations. Opportunities abound for further development there, according to a report from Jones Lang LaSalle, a global real estate consultancy.

"According to our experience, homes near metro stations can quote a higher price and sell much better than those located less conveniently," said Song Huiyong, a research director with Shanghai Centaline Property Consultants.

Proximity to a metro station is not the deciding factor in a home purchase, but convenient transportation does help the sale, said Joe Zhou, local research director at Jones Lang LaSalle.

"The rapid expansion of the metro network helps people easily balance a life of working downtown and living in a suburban area," Zhou said. "As a result, we have seen a rising demand for homes on the outskirts, and such demand also helped the development of homes and pushed home prices in these areas."

Getting around

The result can mean a lifestyle change. Ma Chenyin, a 21-year-old university student, lived in Huangpu district when she was a little girl.

"I still remember the days I took a ferry to go to primary school in Pudong, since there was no tunnel at that time." In 2001, Ma and her family moved to Pudong New Area because a government construction project was going to take their old home.

Ma said transportation was not convenient at first, but her life improved when she was able to take metro Line 6 to People's Square, the city's center, within half an hour. "The metro lines are both convenient and cheap. I will definitely buy a home within walking distance of a metro station when I get married," Ma said.

"Closeness to a metro line station will bring added value to properties," Song, the research director, said. "Of course everybody loves to live in downtown, close to markets, hospitals and parks. However the affordability of living away from the city center is more practical."

Shen Chen in Shanghai contributed to this report.


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