Big BIDS Are Better

The numbers people over at NYU’s Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy have figured this out: that large office-heavy business improvement districts, such as the Downtown Alliance and the Times Square Alliance, can increase the value of property within their boundaries by 15 percent. But the BIDS that serve smaller retail areas appear to have little impact at all–presumably, the report says, because their budgets are not large enough to make a difference in terms of security and capital improvements.

The center sounds a note of caution that could slow down the proliferation of these loosely governed duchies, the number of which has now topped 40 in New York: “The difference in BID impacts suggests that the city should be skeptical of the claim that simply forming another BID is always a positive outcome.”