Making Markets for Development Rights Work: What Determines Demand?

Elizabeth Kopits, Virginia McConnell and Margaret Walls


This paper estimates developers’ demand for Transferable Development Rights (TDRs) in one of the few long-standing active TDR programs in the country, Calvert County, Maryland. We find that baseline zoning is a critical determinant of TDR use—demand is lower in the relatively high-density residential areas than in the low-density rural areas. Changes in baseline density limits have a larger effect on TDR use in rural areas than in residential and town center areas. We identify subdivision characteristics that are significant in explaining TDR use and discuss implications for other jurisdictions considering revisions to, or adoption of, TDR programs. (JEL Q24, R11)

This article requires a subscription to view the full text. If you have a subscription you may use the login form below to view the article. Access to this article can also be purchased.

Purchase access

You may purchase access to this article. This will require you to create an account if you don't already have one.