The future of real estate developments may be shaped by a futuristic technology; the self-driving car. It is unclear exactly how or when the impacts of autonomous vehicles will be fully realized but experts are suggesting the technology will have a major role to play in how our living spaces will look going forward.
A recent report out of MIT predicts a possible near-future where self-driving cars takeover the ride sharing market and make the idea of not owning a vehicle more palatable for the average person. This reduction of personal vehicle ownership would reduce the need for large parking garages in downtown cores and open up further real estate developments. New building opportunities could stimulate gentrification and lead to higher property values.
Alternatively, not having to drive could increase commute tolerance which would extend suburban sprawl and lead to a larger housing supply, reducing prices overall.
City planning itself may also be influenced as changes in vehicle use could alter the way we use roads. More bike lanes and wider sidewalks may be on the horizon in many urban areas, however the development and planning process in most major cities is often resistant to change and bogged down by regulations.
Although it may not be certain what effect self-driving cars will have, it is still something worth paying attention to.