The Impacts of Tropical Storm Agnes on Residential Property Values in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania

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In 1972, Wilkes-Barre Pennsylvania experienced its greatest flood of record. The magnitude of this flood, combined with spatial differences in flood depths, facilitates the analysis of the impacts of flooding on property values. The City was divided into four areas based on flood depths. Data were collected on housing characteristics and on list and sold prices for several years before and several years after the flood. Temporal and spatial patterns of change for each flood category (including nonflooded) were compared. The findings indicate that the market did not recover to pre-flood levels until more than 30 months after the flood. In addition, the length of the recovery periods as well as the extent of recovery varied with flood depth. Thus, the flood is capitalized in property values, but this is not uniform across the flooded area.

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The Pennsylvania Geographer, v. 28, issue 2, p. 55-67

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